Professor of Comparative Literature and English

Affiliated with:

Department of French & Italian, Department of Spanish & Portuguese

Area Centers: African Studies, European Union Studies, Global Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Center for Translation Studies 

Lemann Institute for Brazilian Studies 

Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory

Specializations / Research Interest(s)

  • Arabic and Arab Diaspora literatures, Arabic intellectual history, comparative literature, transnational studies, postcolonial and translation theory

Research Description

  • My current research focuses on the Arabic novel and on Arab literary and cultural relations with the Americas, particularly the United States and Brazil.


  • Ph.D. Comparative Literature, UIUC (1998)

Distinctions / Awards

  • University Scholar, 2016-2019
  • President, American Comparative Literature Association, 2019-2020
  • Fellow, American Council for Learned Societies, 2017



  • The Oxford Handbook of Arab Novelistic Traditions. Oxford University Press, 2017.
  • Lughz al-Qaf. Cairo: National Center for Translation, 2015.
  • Approaches to Teaching the Works of Naguib Mahfouz. MLA Publications, 2012.
  • Immigrant Narratives: Orientalism and Cultural Translation in Arab American and Arab British Literature. Oxford University Press, 2011.
  • Thou Shalt Nor Speak My Language. Syracuse University Press, 2008.
  • Tayeb Salih: Ideology and the Craft of Fiction. Syracuse University Press, 2003.

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