Mayanthi L Fernando
|Division||Social Sciences Division|
|Affiliations||Humanities Division, |
Feminist Studies Department
|Office||309 Social Science 1|
|Office Hours||On Leave|
|Campus Mail Stop||Social Sciences 1 Faculty Services|
Research InterestsMayanthi Fernando’s research examines the conflicts, ethical and political practices, and forms of community generated at the intersection of the Islamic and secular-republican traditions in contemporary France. She is interested in how Muslim French – i.e. young people committed to being simultaneously Muslim and French – draw on both the Islamic and secular-republican traditions to fashion new ways of Muslim being and thinking, and how secular French institutions interpellate these Muslims in particular ways. She is currently working on a book manuscript tentatively titled On The Muslim Question: Anxieties of the Secular Republic, which analyzes the forms of subjectivity, religiosity, and political community constituted by Muslim French revivalists, the legal, political, and institutional practices that comprise laïcité (French secularism), and the ways in which these practices constrain pious Muslims, who are often caught in the structural and discursive tensions endemic to laïcité.
Biography, Education and TrainingB.A., Harvard University
M.A., Ph.D., University of Chicago
Honors, Awards and Grants2011 Hellman Fellows Program research grant
2010-2011 Member, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, NJ
2010-2011 U.S. Fulbright Scholar Program
2010-2011 UC President's Faculty Fellowship
2010 UC Center for New Racial Studies research grant
Selected Publications“Reconfiguring Freedom: Muslim Piety and the Limits of Secular Law and Public Discourse in France.” American Ethnologist 37:1 (2010), pp. 19-35.
“Exceptional Citizens: Secular Muslim Women and the Politics of Difference in France.” Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale 17:3 (2009), pp. 379-392.
“Droit, laïcité et diversité culturelle. De quelques contradictions françaises” (with C. Eberhardt and N. Gafsia). Revue Interdisciplinaire d’Études Juridiques 54 (2005), pp. 129-169.
“The Republic’s ‘Second Religion’: Recognizing Islam in France.” Middle East Report 235 (2005), pp. 12-17.
Teaching InterestsTeaching Specialties: anthropology of Islam, politics and secularism, modernity and difference, postcolonial Britain and France, anthropology of freedom, anthropology of Western Europe, multiculturalism
Courses TaughtANTH 130T Religion and Politics in the Muslim World
ANTH 130O Postcolonial Britain and France
ANTH 197G Religion, Gender, Sexuality
ANTH 255 Anthropology of Secularism
ANTH 260 Anthropology of Freedom