Workshop Presenters

Lamia BenyoussefLamia Benyoussef

Gender, Spatiality, and Identity Politics: Mapping Tunisia’s Post-revolutionary Cyber and Physical Habitus

Lamia Benyoussef is Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures.  She holds a B.A. in English from L’École Normale Supérieure of Sousse in Tunisia and an M.A. and Ph.D. in English from Michigan State University. Her areas of specialization are post-coloniality, feminist theory and African literature with an emphasis on the Maghreb. Prior to coming to UAB, she taught British, American, and postcolonial literature at the University of Carthage and the University of the Center (Sousse) in Tunisia. Her current research projects focus on the Holocaust in North African literature and Tunisian women during World War II. She is author of Production of the Muslim Woman: Negotiating Text, History and Ideology (Lexington Press 2005). Her authored articles include: “Is it the End of State Feminism? Tunisian Women during and after the Revolution,” in the The Arab Revolution in Context: Civil Society and Democracy in a Changing Middle East, eds. Benjamin Isakhan, Fethi Mansouri and Shahram Akbarzadeh (Melbourne University Press, 2012); “Teaching about Women and Islam in North Africa: Integrating Postcolonial Feminist Theory in Foreign Culture Pedagogy,” Foreign Language Annals 44.1 (Spring 2011): 181-233; and  “Anne Frank Goes East: The Algerian Civil War and the Nauseam of Postcoloniality in Shurufat bahr al shamal (Balconies of the North Sea),” in special issue, “Embargoed Literature: The Case of Arabic,” ed. Mustapha Marrouchi, College Literature (Winter 2010): 61-80. Email:

Susanne DahlgrenDahlgren1

Body, Politics and the Radically Public Space in the Southern Yemeni Uprising

Susanne Dahlgren studied anthropology at the University of Edinburgh, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and University of Helsinki. She is author of Contesting Realities: The Public Sphere and Morality in Southern Yemen (Syracuse University Press 2010). After completing her Ph.D. in 2004, she was a Post-doctoral fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies and worked on a research project titled, “Spatial Moralities, Islam and the Public Sphere in the Middle East.” This was part of an Academy of Finland research project, “Making a Good Muslim: Contested Fields of Religious Normativity in the Age of Global Islam.” Following that she received a 5-year Academy of Finland Research Fellowship for the project, “Rights in Law and at Home: Islamic Shari’a as Formal and Informal Legal Practice.” She is currently a Lecturer in Development Studies, University of Helsinki. She guest edited, “Moral Ambiguities and Muslim Lives,” a special issue of the journal Contemporary Islam 7:1, 2013, with Samuli Schielke, and “Middle Eastern Family Revisited,” two special issues of Hawwa: Journal of Women of the Middle East and the Islamic World  6:1 and 2, 2008. Her publications include, “The Snake with a Thousand Heads: The Southern Cause in Yemen,” in The Arab Revolts: Dispatches on Militant Democracy in the Middle East, eds. David McMurray and Amanda Ufheil-Somers (Indiana University Press 2013); “Shari’a in the Diaspora: Displacement, Exclusion and Anthropology of the Traveling Middle East,’ in Anthropology in the Middle East and North Africa: The State of the Art, eds. Sherine Hafez and Susan Slyomovics (Indiana University Press 2013); and “Making Shari’a Alive: Court Practice under an Ethnographic Lens,” in Islamic Ethnographies, eds. Baudouin Dupret et al. (Edinburgh University Press 2012). Email:

Karina EileraasKAE6

Sex(t)ing Revolution, Re-membering the Public Square: Sexuality, Cyberspace & Transnational Feminist Body Politics

Karina Eileraas graduated from Wesleyan University with a BA in French, Women’s Studies, and International Relations. She began her Ph.D. in French & Francophone Studies with minors in Performance Studies & Gender Studies at Northwestern University, and subsequently became the first graduate of the Ph.D. program in Women’s Studies at UCLA. Eileraas is currently Visiting Assistant Professor of Gender Studies & International Development Studies at UCLA, and will teach in the Anthropology Department at Pomona College in spring 2014. Last year, she worked with Judith Butler as a Mellon Research Associate on a project related to sexuality, misrecognition, and the Arab Spring with the Program in Critical Theory at UC Berkeley, where she also served as a Visiting Faculty with the Gender & Women’s Studies Department. She has taught in Gender Studies, Political Science, and MENA/ Global Studies at UCLA, UCI, and Carleton College. Her areas of interest include sexual fantasy, violence & visual culture; nationalism, sexuality, and revolution; women’s autobiographical practices in the MENA; music, film and photography; nostalgia and diaspora studies. Her book Between Image and Identity: Transnational Fantasy, Symbolic Violence and Feminist Misrecognition (Lexington Books 2007) addresses women’s autobiographical art and literature with respect to experiences of transnational trauma including colonization, revolution, exile, and rape in Algeria and Southeast Asia. In addition to her work on Aliaa Al-Mahdy, she is currently revising an article on the French-Lebanese film “Lila dit ca” and editing an anthology of feminist and queer critical reflections on Marilyn Monroe.

Susana Galánpicture Susana Galan

Bringing the Space of Politics into Being in Cyberspace: Saudi Women’s Driving Activism

Susana Galán is a Ph.D. student in Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. She is a graduate research assistant at Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society. Profoundly interdisciplinary, her background is in Journalism and Political Science. Her academic career started in the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Spain), where Galán completed her BA in Journalism in 2000. After graduating, she worked as a journalist in the newspaper El Periódico de Catalunya. In 2002, she received a scholarship to complete an MA in European Studies at the Europa-Universität Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder (Germany) and moved to Berlin, where she was active in several internet projects with a focus on peace, women, ecology and global justice. She worked as a Graduate Assistant in the Department of Political Science at Viadrina University. From 2006 to 2010 she lived in Tangiers, where she worked in the field of international co-operation. In June 2011, she earned an MA in Political Analysis from the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Spain) and completed a thesis on the narratives of female personal bloggers during the Egyptian uprisings (January-March 2011). Before starting her doctoral studies at Rutgers, Galán was a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Research on Women at Rutgers University. Her current research focuses on street sexual harassment and assault in post-Mubarak Egypt and women’s collective resistance and activism against sexual violence online and offline. Email:

Banu Gökarıksel20130405_BanuGokariksel-9238

Banu Gökarıksel is Associate Professor of Geography at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Banu will be an interlocutor with all the authors in the Geographies of Gender in the Arab Revolutions  book workshop and will author the concluding chapter of the co-edited volume. Banu is a feminist cultural geographer interested in questions of space, political subjectivity, and everyday life. Through the ethnographic and multi-method fieldwork research she has been conducting in Istanbul since 1996, she analyzes the formation of Muslim political subjects, spaces, and commodities within the Turkish context where Islam, secularism, gender, and consumer capitalism are fiercely debated. She has published more than fifteen articles and book chapters and co-edited a special issue of the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies. Her recent publications have analyzed the spaces of the body, home, street, shopping mall, factory floor, and city; veiling-fashion as a commodity; and the formation and practices of observant Muslim femininities and ‘Islamic’ businesses. Her new research project analyzes the role of politics in public life in Turkey.

Frances HassoDSCN6414

“In the Gulf, There Isn’t a Public Square:” Politics and Police in Thawrat al-Lu’Lu’a (Pearl Revolution) in Bahrain

Frances Hasso is Director of the International Comparative Studies Program and Associate Professor in Women’s Studies and Sociology at Duke University. She joined the Duke faculty in 2010 after 10 years as a faculty member at Oberlin College. Her recent monograph is titled, Consuming Desires: Family Crisis and the State in the Middle East (Stanford University Press 2011). She is also author of Resistance, Repression and Gender Politics in Occupied Palestine and Jordan (Syracuse University Press 2005) and journal articles and book chapters. She is co-organizing with Zakia Salime of Rutgers the Geographies of Gender in the Arab Revolutions workshop and book project and will be co-authoring with Zakia the introduction chapter. Frances is using a sabbatical in 2013-14 to continue work on a research project, “‘Civil’ and ‘Space’ as Fields of Meaning and Practice in Post-Revolutionary Egypt.” Her scholarship has focused on the intersections of transnational dynamics, states, social movements, and individual subjectivities and identities, especially in the Arab world. Email: –

Sonali Pahwasonali

Dramas of Struggle, Revolutionary Affects and Ethics in Egyptian Women’s Blogs

Sonali Pahwa is Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts & Dance at the University of Minnesota. An anthropologist of theatre and performance in Egypt, her doctoral research at Columbia University focused on youth theatre and self-help performance in pre-revolution Egypt, culminating in a book manuscript titled “Theatres of Citizenship: Youth, Performance and Identity in Egypt.” More recently she has studied women’s digital lives in the Arab world, as well as the politics of street performance at Egyptian protests and festivals. Her work has been published in African Theatre and Middle East Research and Information Project. Her research and teaching interests center on transnational theatre circuits, political performance, youth cultures, and digital embodiment and affect. Sonali held a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in the program Cultures in Transnational Perspective at UCLA, and a EUME fellowship at Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin. She also taught for three years at Northwestern University – Qatar. Email:

Zakia Salimezakia botnaic 2

Proliferating Sites of Gender, Feminism and Protest: The Moroccan Scene

Zakia Salime is Associate Professor in Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. Zakia’s research interests include, race, empire, the political economy of the “war on terror,” development policies, Islamic societies and movements, and Middle East and US relations. Salime’s book Between Feminism and Islam: Human Rights and Sharia Law in Morocco (University of Minnesota 2011) illustrates this interplay of global regimes of rights and local alternatives by looking at the interactions among feminist and Islamist women’s movements in Morocco. She is co-organizer of the Geographies of Gender in the Arab Revolutions workshop with Frances Hasso and will be co-authoring with Frances the introductory chapter. Salime is currently working on a book project, the “Politics of Protest and the ‘Arab Spring:’ From Feminism to Hip Hop in Morocco.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *