Aaron Dial is a Ph.D. Candidate at North Carolina State University in the Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media (CRDM) program where his expertise is in materialist and digital media studies, digital humanities, and cultural studies of technology and race. These areas of expertise inform his research and teaching interests, which, broadly sketched, are Black studies, affective labor, popular culture, urban spaces and temporal flows, and the nexus between sports and science and technology.
Right now, he is working on his dissertation project, entitled Deadstock, A Philosophy of Sneakers and Materiality in the Afterlife of Black Bodies. This work articulates the intimate and undiscussed connections between sneakers as material objects and Black bodies. Aaron excavates sneakers from the strict confines of culture and fashion, asserting their existence as an object wherein bodies act and that acts upon bodies and spaces. Furthermore, this project hones the theoretical position that sneakers exist first and foremost as literal extensions of Black bodies, both sporting and cultural. That is, in sneakers, racialized imaginations of productive bodies are enlivened both as representative cultural fantasies and a collective reverie constellating the athletic possibilities of human potential.