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2020 Sabbagh Lecture: Sherine Hamdy, "Comics, Gender, and Knowledge Production in the Arab World"

Sherine Hamdy, Ph.D., who is an associate professor of anthropology at the University of California, Irvine, will speak on “Comics, Gender, and Knowledge Production in the Arab World.” The lecture will be held at 7:00 p.m. at the Tucson Marriott University Park Hotel, 880 East 2nd Street.

Both the lecture and the reception that follows are free and open to the public.

About the Speaker

Sherine Hamdy, who earned her Ph.D. from New York University, studies medical anthropology, bioethics, and science and technology in the Middle East. She uses comics to bring her research to a wider audience and is co-author, with Coleman Nye, of Lissa: A Story of Friendship, Medical Promise, and Revolution, the debut anthropological graphic novel of the University of Toronto Press’ ethnoGRAPHIC series. Her current research projects include a collaborative project, with Soha Bayoumi, which critically engages with physicians’ roles in the recent political upheavals in the Arab world; and a collaborative project with artist/ scholar Myra El-Mir on the production of Feminist and Queer Arab comics.

Professor Hamdy is the author of Our Bodies Belong to God: Organ Transplants, Islam, and the Struggle for Human Dignity in Egypt. She has received numerous fellowships and awards for her work, including the 2009 Rudolph Virchow Award from the Society of Medical Anthropology.

About the Lecture

In the Arab world, particularly with the onset of the popular uprisings, there has also been an explosion in comics production for adult readers. Much of the new comics production critically interrogates social constraints and norms and is able to do so via channels of production and dissemination that lie outside of the mainstream industry.

This talk will focus on a subset of these countercultural comics: those representing feminist and queer perspectives in the Arab world and diaspora. Professor Hamdy will also talk about her own experience in using Arab comics for furthering feminist research within the academy, as a co-creator of the graphic book Lissa: A Story of Friendship, Medical Promise, and Revolution. This piece of ethno-fiction is a feminist portrayal of illness and disease amidst the Egyptian revolution, thus highlighting the imbrication of politics and the body, and the revolutionary potential of friendship. She will also speak of her current experiments in genre and translation, as she works to bring Lissa to Arabic-speaking audience.

The Sabbagh Lectures

The School of Anthropology is very pleased to present this series of distinguished speakers in the Sabbagh Lectures. This year the School presents the twenty-eighth annual Sabbagh Lecture. The lectures focus on the Arab cultures of the Middle East from an anthropological perspective.

Through the generosity of Drs. Entisar and Adib Sabbagh, an expert in Arab cultures is brought to campus each year. The guest speaker participates in one public lecture and a master seminar for graduate students.

Dr. Entisar (Vivi) Sabbagh is a Ph.D. graduate of the UA School of Anthropology, and Dr. Adib Sabbagh is a Tucson cardiac surgeon. The Sabbaghs sponsor these lectures to enhance public understanding and appreciation for the complexity and diversity of Arab cultures. The lectures also serve to enrich the curriculum of the School of Anthropology by bringing to it the expertise of eminent scholars.

Date: Thursday, February 27, 2020, 7:00 PM

Reception: following the lecture

Location: Tucson Marriott University Park, 880 East 2nd Street

FREE and open to the public