Kirk was educated in the United States and France, and received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles. Trained primarily as a literary scholar, Kirk’s dissertation explores the relationship between literature, anthropology and the visual arts, and locates African forms of creolization discourse. Kirk’s postdoctoral research will resituate twentieth century South African racial thought as part of a transoceanic exchange between the Black Atlantic and Indian Ocean worlds. As an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow, Kirk began the early stages of research for this project both in Mauritius and South Africa. He has also worked as an academic editor and initiated multiple projects to digitize historical archives.