About Me
Work In Progress
Awards & Grants


I had taught, am teaching, and plan to teach and develop the following courses (among others):

Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

There are four major sub-disciplines or fields of study of (general) anthropology: prehistoric archeology, biological anthropology, linguistic anthropology, and (socio) cultural anthropology. This course, however, is mainly devoted to the study of (socio) cultural anthropology, namely a comparative study of human ways of life or cultures. Socially distributed knowledge and habits, cultures are traditions and customs, transmitted through learning, that form and guide the beliefs and behaviors of the people exposed to them. This course is an introduction to histories, key concepts, methods, theories, and modes of analysis in cultural anthropology. It provides an opportunity to try out new analytical strategies and frameworks for understanding human culture, politics, religion, belief, ritual, power, language, gender, family, ethnicity, nation, globalization, migration, transnational movement, and so forth. This course, moreover, introduces students to key analytical tools for testing our assumptions about ourselves and others so that we can better understand the contemporary world and actively engage our shared challenges. 

Anthropology of Islam and Muslim Societies

The course examines the diversity and complexity of Muslim politics, cultures, and societies aiming at challenging and demystifying the image of monolithic Muslim world developed in the Western academia, scholarships, and popular beliefs. In this course, I historicize Islam as a religion and situate Muslims in the context of their own cultural traditions. Drawing mainly from historical and anthropological literature, it discusses different multiple understandings and religious practices among Muslims societies both in the past and present. While history helps us to understand Muslims and their cultures within the context of their development and genealogy, as well as in relation to the global patterns of domination and power, anthropology helps us explain cultural traditions and understand Muslims and their worldviews from their own perspectives. In brief, the course tries to explore how Muslims across the globe throughout history understand, interpret, reinterpret, and practice Islamic teachings, beliefs, and knowledge, and how they engage with modern concepts—and phenomena—of globalization, pluralism, democracy, secularism, modernity, and so forth.     

Contending Modernities

This course explores the possibilities for productive collaboration among Christian, Islamic and secular institutions, movements and individuals, for the purpose of addressing global, regional and local challenges to peace, justice, human rights, development and democratization. Discerning such possibilities requires, in turn, comprehension of the deep structures, values, and worldviews of these three global, internally plural, discursive communities, and of the ways these various markers of identity find expression (and converge or collide) in concrete historical cases and in the context of grappling with specific “issues” (e.g., violent conflict, economic development, gender and family dynamics, science technology and bioethics, etc.).

Political Islam and Muslim Politics

The course aims at providing a general introduction on Islam and politics. It examines the complex phenomena of Islam as both a spiritual-ethical-moral entity and a political movement. It investigates social processes and historical developments since the early formations of Islam that contributed to the shape of “multiple Islams” ranging from Salafism, Sufism, rationalism, traditionalism, modernism, to Islamism, a form of ideology that maintains Islam as a political power and aims at building an Islamic state. The course, moreover, discusses the links between European colonialism and the rise of Muslim modern nation-states, depicts multiple forms of government in Muslim-majority countries, and describes the plurality of Muslim politics across the globe in responding to the ideas and practices of political Islam, Islamic politics, and modern democracy.  

Work and Society

This course intends on studying the relationships between work and society, and how work (any forms of work) has influenced, shaped, and been influenced / shaped by society. It discusses—and challenges—the broad issues including the forms of work and the "division of labor" in multiple societies, the historical developments of work, the social theories of work, bureaucracy, human interactions, and social changes, the ways that could possibly mediate conflict in workplace, the factors that contribute to the shape of modern industry, among others. In brief, this course is designed to help students understand the pluralities and complexities of the links between work and society. 

Introduction to Peace Studies

Peace Studies is commonly defined as the study of conflict resolution through nonviolent means with a focus on strategies of peacebuilding and reconciliation. It, more broadly, is an interdisciplinary academic field that draws on theology, political science, anthropology, sociology, history, psychology, philosophy, and other fields. The course aims at (1) understanding the causes of violent conflicts and the conditions of peace; (2) developing ways to prevent and resolve war, genocide, terrorism, ethnic and religious violence, political oppression, gross violations of human rights, among others; and (3) building tolerant, just, and peaceful societies and social systems. It covers a wide range of issues related to peace, conflict, violence, justice, inequality, social change, and human rights. Within peace studies, “peace” is defined not just the absence of war and violence (“negative peace”) but also the presence of the conditions for a just and sustainable peace (“positive peace”).   

Conflict Resolution in Islam and Muslim Societies

This course explores the Islamic roots of conflict resolution and principles of peacebuilding embedded in classical Islamic texts, teachings, and traditions as well as the Muslim models or practices of reconciliation and dispute resolution. Although the ideal of peace of Muslim societies is deeply embedded in the vision of Islam, the Qur’an, and practices of Prophet Muhammad, ideas of achieving peace have differed from one another across Muslim cultures. The course, then, intends on examining the interpretive foundations, history, and practices of peace within the contexts of major Islamic paradigms: traditions, reformism, “renewalism”, and Sufism. The origins, value structure, and methodology of each paradigm are examined in light of the challenges facing contemporary Islamic societies. 

Arab and the Middle East Society   

This course examines the history, plurality, and complexity of the Middle East, including North Africa, a home to multiple religions, ethnicities, tribes, and cultures. It discusses how a variety of Arab and Middle Eastern societies and religions negotiate and resolve their ethno-religious tensions and differences. More specifically, the course assesses the most recent socio-political developments in the region and discusses the future prospect for democracy, tolerance, peace, reconciliation, and citizenship in the areas.


About me | Publications | Work in Progress | Awards & Grants | Teaching | Contact