Nada El-Kouny joined us for a conversation about her scholarship and research on two villages in the Nile Delta, al-Beheira and al-Daqahliya, focusing on state development, neglect, and community mobility through infrastructure. She shared with us her experience with positionality, navigating the worlds of journalism, research, coming from a U.S. academic institution, being in male-dominated spaces as a young woman, and returning to her familial village as a researcher. Nada also spoke about her hopes for the future of Middle Eastern studies and the study of its rural communities.

Nada received her doctoral degree in sociocultural anthropology from Rutgers University in 2020. Her joint ethnographic fieldwork and archival research addressed rural politics, land rights, and migration in Egypt’s Nile Delta region. Her former work experience includes labor migration research, journalism, and documentary film production.  

This is the thirteenth in a series of interviews with artists, academics, activists, and other migrants of Egypt around the world. Check out previous conversations in the series and stay tuned for our next installment.

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