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Affiliated Faculty


Visiting Faculty & Researchers

Nathan Gibson –

Geoffrey Moseley – Visiting Scholar


Graduate Students – current and visiting

Mohammed Allehbi – (History) Ph.D. student in Medieval Islamic History with a focus on the Abbasid Caliphate. Holds an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Chicago. Research focuses on how medieval Muslim governments maintained their authority in cities that they ruled through criminal law enforcement.

Ashkan Bahrani – (Religion) has an MA in Islamic Philosophy and Theology from Shiraz University (2009). Published both original research on comparative mysticism, and works of translation from English into Persian. His primary research interests include the intellectual history of Sufism and critical theory of religion. He is also interested in contemporary Islamic thought, Middle East studies, and Christian theological studies.

Shounak Ghosh – (History) Received his education and training in History from Presidency College, Kolkata and the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. His research interests center on institutions of statecraft and governance, diplomatic encounters and power contestations in early modern Eurasia; regional histories of the Deccan plateau and Konkan coast; maritime trade in the Indian Ocean; connected and comparative histories of states and empires in early modern Islamic East.

Vineet Gupta – (Religion) Completed bachelor’s and master’s degrees in South Asian history in Delhi and Heidelberg. Research interests in South Asian devotional traditions, namely Hindu, Muslim, and Sikh, and particularly the rituals, practices, and beliefs amongst the lay followers of these traditions. His PhD research focuses on the Bohras, the Tayyibi-Ismaili Muslim group settled in western India, primarily in the state of Gujarat.

Ismail Kurun – (Philosophy) works on medieval political philosophy, empiricism, epistemology, and Avicenna. His book, The Thelogical Origins of Liberalism, appeared in 2016 with Lexington Books.

Austin Luebke – (Religion) holds an MA in Religion from the University of Chicago. His research interests include characterizations of Sufi practice and experience as the embodiment of wider Ash‘arite theology, perceptions of orthodoxy and heterodoxy with respect to Sufism, and debates and practices around Islamic shrine culture of the premodern Middle East.

Taryn Marashi – (History) Ph.D. student with a focus on social history and conflict under Abbasid rule. Her research interests include mysticism, sectarian development and thought, early Islamic literature, shrines and the politics of pilgrimage.

Dipanjan Mazumder – (History) is working on the production of cultural authority along the frontiers of Mughal Empire in early modern South Asia. Presently his research focuses on the political, economic, and the cultural production of the ‘local’ along the edges of the successive empires in Bengal between the sixteenth and the eighteenth centuries.

Mohammad Meerzaei – (Religion) holds a B.A. in Persian Literature from Shiraz University and an M.A in Ancient Iranian Culture and Languages from Bu-Ali Sina University, Iran. Primary research foci are the religious milieu of the Middle East in Late Antiquity, Qur'anic studies, and Persian Sufi Literature.

Luis Serrano Lora – (Religion) holds an MA in Qur'an and Translation Studies from the University of Granada. His research focuses on Qur'an and multi-linguistic paradigms for religion and text, intertextuality, and orality.

 Haniya Yameen – (Religion) holds an MA in Religious Studies from University of Chicago. She is working on Qur'anic and Biblical intertextuality, Islamic philosophy, and early Islamic literature.

Benjamin Zeppos – (Religion) has joined the MA program and focuses on Arabic and Hebrew. His thesis project will explore Jewish convert figures in early Islamic literature and their reception in medieval Islam.