Visiting Scholars and Fellows





Sophia Brown

CBRL Visiting Research Fellow

Sophia Brown holds a PhD in Postcolonial Studies from the School of English, University of Kent, UK. Her thesis examined Palestinian life writing, focusing in particular on the narration of exile and the ways in which it informs models of selfhood within a context of conflict and loss. At the Kenyon Institute, she is undertaking additional fieldwork and working on her first monograph, based on the thesis. This monograph broadens the scope of the doctoral work to also include more writers, as well as a fuller consideration of each author's awareness of their audience and the ways in which the texts are published by an industry that is often restrained in its presentation of Palestinian voices for a global literary marketplace. Sophia’s research interests are primarily situated in life-writing studies and literary studies that focus on the Middle East and North Africa and her ongoing goal is to bring these areas of study closer together.







Teodora Todorova

CBRL Visiting Research Fellow

Teodora Todorova is based in the Department of Sociology at the University of Warwick (UK) where she teaches social movements and political action, and class and capitalism in the neoliberal world. She holds a PhD in Critical Theory, an MA in Post-conflict Cultures, and a BA (Hons) in Social and Cultural Studies from the University of Nottingham (UK). Her doctoral research examined critical and decolonial activism in Palestine-Israel through the case studies of Zochrot, ICAHD, and Anarchists Against the Wall. She has also conducted research on gendered violence and post-conflict reconciliation in Bosnia-Herzegovina. More broadly, her research interests include grassroots activism and transnational civil society responses to gendered and racialised power and state violence.     






Polly Withers

CBRL Visiting Research Fellow​

Polly Withers has a PhD in Middle East Politics from the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter (UK). Her doctoral research provided an ethnographic and gender-sensitive analysis of urban Palestinian youths’ translocal musical practices, in the post-Oslo era. Her post-doctoral work at the Kenyon Institute focuses on further fieldwork and analysis of the politics of performative and expressive sonic cultures in the Palestinian case. This research is especially concerned to trace the identities, social relations, and hierarchies such musical practices perform, and in which contexts these shift. Polly also holds an MRes degree in Middle East Studies (University of Exeter), an MA degree in Gender Studies (SOAS), and a BA(hons) in International Relations (University of Exeter). Her research interests are interdisciplinary, drawing on anthropology, gender studies, critical political theory, (sub/post) cultural studies, queer theory, and performance studies. 



Recent CBRL Visiting Research Fellows

Jamie Allinson, Victoria Biggs, Michael G. Brown, Dena Freeman, Piotr Jacobssen, Sean LeatherburySuzanne Morrison, Nora Parr, Hector M. PatmoreEdmund Thomas, Eduard Reitenbach, Reema Salha Fadda, Hanan Toukan, Fiona Wright.

Current and past affiliated research projects

Conflict in Cities and the Contested State - Prof. Wendy Pullan (Cambridge University)
Excavations at Khirbet el Mafjar, Jericho -  Dr Mahmoud Hawari (Birzeit University and University of Oxford)
Perceptions of democratization in the Arab-Mediterranean world -  Dr Michelle Pace (Birmingham University)
Restoration of the Dome of the Rock -  Prof. Beatrice St Laurent (Bridgewater State College, USA)
Statebuilding as Exclusion: (Re-)Defining Palestine -  Dr Mandy Turner (University of Bradford)
Teaching Contemporary Palestinian Political History -  Dr Karma Nabulsi (University of Oxford)
Tel Zahara Excavations -  Prof. Susan Cohen (Montana State University, USA)
Tel Jezreel Post-Excavation and Publication Project - Dr Charlotte Whiting (CBRL Honorary Fellow).