Education

  • Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles
  • M.A. California State University, Long Beach
  • B.A. Universit√© des Sciences Humaines et Sociales

Background

My areas of interest, research and teaching include transnational migration, human rights, Islamophobia, Mediterranean border politics, the art of resistance, the role of human mobility in cultural and social change and the so-called "Arab Spring." My interests are also centered on the politics of representation, gender, the intellectual/cultural history of the MENA region, Arabic language (MSA and dialects) and Arabic literature and Translation.

Some of my research has been published in a number of peer-reviewed venues such as a recent book chapter titled "The Fear of Islam in Italy: The Muslim Migration Debate after the Arab Spring," which is included in a three-volume set entitled Understanding and Experiencing Religious Diversity in Today's World. Another article titled "Tracing the Development of the Code of Personal Status: The Tunisian Case," was recently published in the Journal of International Women's Studies.

I am currently working on a book manuscript that explores the ways in which Tunisian irregular migrants undermine their potential deportability by engaging in various forms of resistance (individual and collective) to produce new practices of political belonging, claim their rights, and avoid deportation. This book attempts to engender more comprehensive and cross-cultural approaches to the study of irregular migration expanding the study of trans-border movements to countries, such as Tunisia, that have long been understudied and overlooked in the larger migration literature. The relevance of this book cannot be overstated as political turmoil in the Middle East continues, and irregular migrants and refugees pour into Europe.

Through my wide-ranging anthropological research (USA, Italy, Tunisia), long-term involvement with NGOs and my years of teaching Arabic (MSA, Egyptian, Levantine and Maghrebi), I acquired an extensive experience in interactive teaching, curricula development, documentation and publication, multi-sited ethnographic field research and project management and coordination. My teaching experiences at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) consolidated my knowledge of key pedagogical and methodological approaches pertaining to teaching anthropology, the cultures of the Middle East and North Africa and Arabic.

In my teaching, I have always valued the power of interdisciplinary scholarship. In my Arabic classes, for instance, I always seek to ensure that my students are learning the language while continuously being exposed to different aspects of the vibrant cultures in the MENA region.

Multidisciplinary, multicultural and multi-institutional collaboration, and the use of ethnography-based research as a teaching tool, constitute the hallmark of my early career, and I will certainly continue this path at Davidson College.