man in tuxedo looking off left

Derek Tanios Mkhaiel

PhD Student
Office: Bessey 273

Research Areas

New Materialism, Paralogic Rhetoric, Speculation, Contemporary and Street Art, Ecological Marxism, Literary/Critical Theory, Situationism, Utopia 


Derek’s composition research focuses on the generative pedagogical possibilities at the intersection of paralogic rhetoric/post-process, new materialisms, and contemporary art. Specifically, focusing on the interconnected relations between meaning, materiality, situations, and event. His rhetorical research focuses on the material relations of social-environmental ecologies, the material-discursive properties of contemporary and street art and their meaning-making capacities, and the development of a Utopian Rhetoric aimed towards generating radical and political potentialities.


Dual M.A., California State University, 2017

B.A., California State University, 2014

Representative Work

Mkhaiel, Derek. “Doğan, Détournement, and The Ontology of Dissent” Interdisciplinary Humanities (Forthcoming 2020).

“Extinction Rebellion’s Material Resistance and Utopic Rhetoric” Society for Utopian Studies, East Lansing, MI. 10 Oct. 2019.

“Speculative Performativity: Fostering Rupture, Disorientation, and Imagination” Conference on College Composition and Communication, Pittsburgh, PA.13 Mar. 2019.

“Finjen Ahweh: The Lebanese Practice of Rupturing Time” Cultural Rhetorics Conference, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI.17 Nov. 2018.

“Speculative Futures” Watson Conference, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY. 25 Oct. 2018.

Sample Courses Taught

WRA 101: Writing as Inquiry

 Social Media

Discord: Tanios!#4369

Twitter: @UtopianRhetor