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Robin Kirk, Senior Lecturer of Cultural Anthropology and Executive Director, Duke Human Rights Center of Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Robin Kirk
Contact Info:   
Office Location:  Bivins 107
Office Phone:  (919) 641-0635
Email Address: send me a message

Teaching (Fall 2019):

    Class Bldg 135, TuTh 10:05 AM-11:20 AM
    (also cross-listed as HISTORY 242S.01, LATAMER 246S.01, RIGHTS 245S.01)
Teaching (Spring 2020):

    Smith Wrhs B271, WF 08:30 AM-09:45 AM
    (also cross-listed as ICS 113.01, PUBPOL 162.01, RIGHTS 104.01)
    Crowell 106, WF 11:45 AM-01:00 PM
    (also cross-listed as ENGLISH 290S.07, HISTORY 190S.07, PUBPOL 290S.07, RIGHTS 290S.07)
Office Hours:

Mondays and Wednesdays 1-4 pm

M.F.A.Vermont College2014
B.A.University of Chicago1982

South America
Human Rights
Cultural Memory
Politics of Memory
Transnational Studies
Research Interests:

Kirk is the author of three books, including More Terrible Than Death: Massacres, Drugs and America’s War in Colombia (PublicAffairs) and The Monkey’s Paw: New Chronicles from Peru (University of Massachusetts Press). She is the coeditor of The Peru Reader: History, Culture, Politics (Duke University) and helps edit Duke University Press’s World Readers series. Her essay on Colombia and human rights appears in Human Rights and Conflict Resolution in Context: Colombia, Sierra Leone, and Northern Ireland (Syracuse Studies on Peace and Conflict Resolution, May 2009), edited by Eileen F. Babbitt and Ellen Lutz. An award-winning poet, Kirk also won the 2005 Glamour magazine non-fiction contest with her essay on the death penalty, available in the November 2005 issue. In the Fall of 2006, she was a Fulbright lecturer at the Human Rights Center at Istanbul Bilgi University in Turkey. In 2005-2006, she was a consultant to the Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the first-ever truth commission within the United States. Kirk authored, co-authored and edited over twelve reports for Human Rights Watch, all available on-line. In the 1980s, Kirk reported for U.S. media from Peru, where she covered the war between the government and the Shining Path. During that time, she also prepared reports for the U.S. Committee on Refugees, including the first report ever on the plight of Peru’s internally displaced people. Kirk is a former Radcliffe Bunting Fellow and is a past winner of the Media Alliance Meritorious Achievement Award for Freelance Writing. Kirk directs DukeEngage’s Duke in Belfast program. She is the associate director of Duke’s International Comparative Studies program.


Conflict management • Creative writing • Creative writing--Fiction • Creative writing--Juvenile literature • Denial of justice • Human Rights • Human rights advocacy • Human rights and globalization • Human rights movements • Human rights--America • Human rights--History--20th century • Human rights--Northern Ireland • Journalism • Online journalism • Truth commissions

Curriculum Vitae
Recent Publications   (More Publications)

  1. Kirk, R, When the shooting stops: How transitional justice turns knowledge into acknowledgment, World Policy Journal, vol. 33 no. 3 (September, 2016), pp. 39-44, Duke University Press [doi]  [abs]
  2. Kirk, R, Peculiar Motion (March, 2016), Finishing Line Press, ISBN 978-1-944899-01-1 [available here]  [abs]
  3. Kirk, R, Drugs, Thugs, and Diplomats: US Policymaking in Colombia by Winifred Tate, Anthropological Quarterly, vol. 89 no. 4 (2016), pp. 1271-1275, Project Muse [doi]
  4. Kirk, R, The Quiet Company, in Tomorrow, edited by Henderson, K (June, 2013), Kayelle Press, New South Wales, Australia, ISBN 9780987565709  [abs]
  5. Kirk, R, No right to be silent on torture, Muslim World, vol. 103 no. 2 (April, 2013), pp. 229-235, WILEY, ISSN 0027-4909 [Gateway.cgi], [doi]

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