Michael Stablein Jr is a joint-PhD candidate in Theater and Performance Studies and English Language and Literature at the University of Chicago. His dissertation research centers on the generic contours of the bildungsroman—or more specifically the popular, American coming-of-age novel—and how those conventions of anticipation, expectation, and accomplishment play out as, and structure the play of, violence across media and social performances post-45. He engages both the lives disciplined within and by narrative form. The research picks up the temporality debates in queer theory at an intersection with Black studies, psychoanalysis, and performance studies. He is one of ATHE’s 2022 Emerging Scholars in the Performance Studies Working Group. He holds a Bachelor's from Florida State University and a Master's from Columbia University of New York.