Professor Ingrid Bianca Byerly is Director of the Humanitarian Challenges Focus Program, Senior Lecturing Fellow and Research Scholar in the Departments of Music and Cultural Anthropology, and lead facilitator of Public Speaking with the Thompson Writing Program and Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University.
She is a South African interdisciplinary scholar in the arts, humanities and social sciences. Her ethnomusicology seminars focus the Politics of Music between cultures in conflict, and her Public Speaking courses focus on effective advocacy for humanitarian causes. Her advisory focus has been with Freshman students (preparing them for academic success in college), Research Design seminars (for students returning from global fieldwork programs) and the Senior Honors Thesis seminars (for students graduating with distinction). Her own research focus lies in the investigation of global social protest movements, especially through music revolutions. In the decade leading up to the end of Apartheid, she served as teacher and lecturer in cross-cultural communications throughout South Africa, and in that time, she combined her training in classical music with a fascination for the role of contemporary protest music in politics. Her doctoral dissertation explored the lives and works of musicians dedicating their art towards social change in South Africa while undergoing political transition and social transformation from Apartheid to Democracy. Dr. Byerly has also offered courses in study skills, protest literature, and intercultural communication in South Africa, England, Russia, Europe and the United States. She held the position of lecturer and Course Director for international students from over 45 countries at the annual Regent Courses in Oxford, England, for ten summer sessions. A fellow of Sigma Xi and the American Council of Learned Societies, her interests include filmmaking (for which she was awarded the Panasonic Individual Videomaker Award in London for When Nations Meet), and the investigation of global revolutionary movements (for which she received the Charles Seeger Prize in Toronto, Canada from the Society for Ethnomusicology).
Dr. Byerly is a fervent proponent of the Semester at Sea program, and she has previously taught on Semester at Sea’s MV Explorer for both the Summer 2011 voyage around the Mediterranean Basin, and the Spring 2014 Round-the-World voyage. She considers teaching on the ship and being mother to her three sons Cameron, Blake and Alexei, her ultimate privileges.