I’m currently at work on Unmentionables, a new book on Syrian textile work in the Arab Atlantic world. Touching on diasporic labor contestation, class formation, supply chain power, and racial capitalism across the mahjar’s textile industries, the project follows Syrian workers as they source, manufacture, carry, and sell garments across the Americas. I’ll post updates and publications resulting from this research here.
Unmentionables: Women, Garment Work, and Labor Politics in the Arab American Mahjar, talk at the Center for Arab American Studies, UM Dearborn, March 2023.
Ladies Aid as Labor History: Working-Class Formation in the Mahjar, article in the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies, November 2021
This article argues for a class-centered reassessment of Syrian immigrant “ladies aid” politics exploring the intersections of women’s relief with proletarian mutual aid strategies. Drawing from club records and the Arabic press from the city of Boston, the article centers women within processes of working-class formation and concludes that labor history of the mahjar requires focus on spaces of social reproduction beyond the factory floor. (full-text)
Middle East Historian Awarded NEH Fellowship, press release by UC Davis College of Letters and Sciences, January 2021
Responding to economic forces linking the Mediterranean and Atlantic capitalist economies to one another, Arab migrants entered the manufacturing industries of the settler societies they inhabited, including industrial textiles, small-scale commerce, machining, and immigration services.