Max Gonen

PhD Student

Max is a 2nd year PhD student in the Communications department. He received his master's degree from the University of Lund in Sweden. His MA research used performance ethnography to discover how masculinity circulates between and sticks to the bodies of men who travel to Thailand to train at Muay Thai fight camps. He discovered that what participants often referred to as augmented intervals of self-improvement and healing were largely predicated on the discursive framing of the self as in virtuous pursuit of healing from the ills of late capitalism. But, despite the power of the individualized healing narrative, these experiences entailed consuming otherness and experiencing the economic freedoms of a favorable exchange rate to remediate what participants experienced as slippages of their masculine power. 


Max is an artist and writer who uses video, poetry and prose to surface and manipulate the performances of self we often take as natural and inevitable. He is currently pursuing a graduate certificate in feminist studies in the Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies department. His present work considers the way we see ourselves as in need of healing and the lengths we go to try and experience it. 


Performance studies, queer and trans theory, autoethnography, experimental self-narrative, healing, poetry, altered states, Florida