Dr Ali Kassem

Alwaleed Postdoctoral Fellow
Dr Ali Kassem

Dr Ali Kassem - orcid.org/0000-0001-6527-2304

Alwaleed Postdoctoral Fellow

Home Institution: University of Sussex, American University of Beirut

Ali Kassem is an IASH-Alwaleed postdoctoral research fellow associated with the Institute Project on Decoloniality (IPD ’24). During 2020-2021, Ali was postdoctoral research fellow with the Arab Council for the Social Sciences and the Carnegie Corporation of New York with an affiliation to the Beirut Urban Lab at the American University of Beirut (AUB). Ali received his PhD in 2020 from the School of Law, Politics, and Sociology at the University of Sussex and held teaching appointments at Sussex between 2018-2021. He has also previously held research and/or teaching positions at the Ludwig-Maximillian University in Munich, the Ecole Des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, AUB, the Lebanese Centre for Policy Studies, the Lebanese American University, and others. His main interests are in Post-, anti-, and decolonial work, ethnic and racial studies, inequalities, Islam and Knowledge making on which Ali has published multiple peer-reviewed and non-academic articles and essays.

Project Title: Anti-Muslim Racism and Global Modernity/Coloniality:  the Experienced Erasure of Lived Islam in West Asia

During his postdoctoral fellowship, Ali will be working on his book manuscript titled Islamophobia and Global Coloniality: the Lived Erasure of Visibly Muslim Women in Lebanon. This manuscript is based on his doctoral and postdoctoral work and offers an innovative intervention exploring anti-Muslim racism within Arab-majority and Muslim-majority spaces from a multi-disciplinary decolonial position. Concurrently, Ali will be developing a new large-scale research project to examine racialisation generally, and anti-Muslim racism specifically, in other regions of the Arab-majority space. Beginning with Tunisia and Egypt this will aim to incorporate an analysis of intersecting/entangling identity factors including skin colour, gender, sexuality, nationality, and ethnicity. Through qualitative, reflexive, and participatory work that centres listening, the project will further aim to examine historical and contemporary connectivit(ies) across the global north and the global south through which global structures and narratives in the West Asia North Africa region are produced and reproduced.



Selected Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Articles

2021    (accepted) Kassem, A. ‘Belated Arabo-Islamic Difference in Excess: Racialised Religious Practice under Modernity/Coloniality in Lebanon’, Journal of Contemporary Religion.

2021    Kassem, A. ‘Anti-Muslim hate on the eastern shores of the Mediterranean: Lebanon, the Hijab, and modernity/coloniality’, Ethnic and Racial Studies, Vol 44, issue 12, pp. 2213-2233, DOI: 10.1080/01419870.2021.1881143

2021    'Encountering Wounds and Transforming Academic Research through Fieldwork alongside the Subalternised', Sentio Journal, Vol 1, issue 3, October 2021, pp. 96-100.

2019    Harb, M.; Kassem, A.; and Najdi, W. ‘Entrepreneurial Refugees and the City: Brief Encounters in Beirut.’ Journal of Refugee Studies, Vol. 32, Issue 1, March 2019, Pages 23–41. https://doi.org/10.1093/jrs/fey003

2018    Kassem, A., ‘“Modernization” of the Hawza? Lebanon as a Case Study.’ Contemporary Arab Affairs, Vol. 11, No. 4, December 2018, Pages 83-110. https://doi.org/10.1525/caa.2018.114005 


Book chapters

2022    Kassem, A. ‘Anti-Muslim Hate on the Eastern Shores of the Mediterranean: Lebanon, the Hijab, and Modernity/Coloniality’ in ‘The Politics of Race and Racialisation in the Middle East’ Ed. Burcu Ozcelik (London: Routledge)

2021    Kassem, A. ‘‘Islamic Studies in Academic Lebanese Higher Education: Laying out a Speciality and Reflecting on the Social Sciences’ in ‘A Mirror of the Social Sciences Actors, Practices, and Knowledges in Lebanon’ Ed. Sari Hanafi, Myriam Catusse and Candice Raymond, (Diacritiques éditions).

2018    Harb, M.; Kassem, A; and Najdi, W. ‘Syrian Owned Businesses in the City’ in ‘Refugees as City Makers’ Ed. Mona Fawwaz, Ahmad Gharbieh, Mona Harb and Dounia Salame, Social Justice and City Program publications, Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International affairs. [also published in Arabic under the title: الـمـديـنـة والـسـوريـون مـن أصـحـاب الـمـتـاجـر].


Research Policy Analysis

2020    Kassem, A. 'Moving Beyond the Nation-State: Addressing Religious Freedoms in Lebanon', Rowaq Arabi, 25(2), pp. 53-66, Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHR) [commissioned, published in English and translated to Arabic].


Book reviews

2020    Kassem, A. Review of Islamophobia in Muslim Majority Societies, by Enes Bayrakli and Farid Hafez, ReOrient: The Journal of Critical Muslim Studies, vol. 6, No. 1, Autumn 2020, pages 120-123.

2018    Kassem, A. Review of Troubling Muslim Youth Identity: Nation, Religion and Gender, by Dunne, M., Durrani, N., Fincham, K. and Crossouard, B., ReOrient: The Journal of Critical Muslim Studies, vol. 4, No. 1, 2018, Pages 121–124.