I am a University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Davis in Asian American Studies. My research focuses on political cultures of the Iranian diaspora in the U.S., tracing generational shifts in subjectivity, transnational activism, and cultural production across the historical arc of U.S.-Iran relations. I am especially interested in placing the heterogeneous experience of Iranian migration to the U.S. in dialogue with the experiences of Arab and other Asian populations. My methodological approach takes seriously memory, affect and emotion as an archive of marginalized knowledges, gendered histories and diasporic identity formation that can disrupt assimilation and produce alternatives to heteronormative model minority subjectivity. I engage with queer and transnational feminist critiques in order to map ways of being Iranian in the U.S. that fail to align with dominant discourses emanating from Washington, Tehran, or from within the diaspora itself.
I completed my PhD in American Studies at New York University, with an emphasis on gender and sexuality studies. I also hold an M.F.A. in Creative Non-fiction from Hunter College, City University of New York and a B.A. in English and American Literature from Brown University. My approach to interdisciplinary scholarship is informed by my literary background as well as my ethnographic and archival research practices. I publish in academic journals and literary and journalistic mediums, reflecting my investment in the role of the public intellectual and my commitment to a scholarly praxis that engages issues of social justice.