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Affiliated Department or Office
Humanities and Arts
Philosophy & Religion
BA English Oklahoma State University 1998
MA Women's and Gender Studies The University of Texas at Austin 2006
MA Religion Syracuse University 2010
PhD Religion Syracuse University 2018

My research centers around religion in North Africa and the Middle East with a focus on Islam; I approach the study of Islam through its representation in visual culture. My first book project, an outgrowth of my dissertation, focuses on recent fiction film by Moroccan women filmmakers as oblique forms of resistance to dominant narratives about Muslim women. My research tends to be very interdisciplinary: I draw on religion, cultural studies, feminist theory, film theory and affect theory. I hope that, in doing so, I can help introduce diversity into conversations about Islam, particularly the ways we respond to representations of Muslim women. 

In the classroom, I enjoy reading and thinking about canonical texts and then unsettling the ideas they introduce by reading extra-canonical writers and thinkers. In so doing, I hope to work with students to collectively unsettle some of the deep-seated ideas we all bring into the classroom about religion and geography, gender and ethnicity.

Scholarly Work

“Harems and Huduud: Gendered Space in Farida Benlyazid’s Bab Sama Maftuh,” in Muslims in the Movies: A Global Anthology, ed. Kristian Petersen (Boston: Ilex Foundation and Harvard University Press, 2020).
Professional Highlights & Honors
Religion, Film, and Visual Culture Unit, American Academy of Religion
Sustainable Development Goals

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 5: Gender Equality - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

Gender Equality Goal

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities - Reduce inequality within and among countries

Reduced Inequalities Goal