Heba Arafa Abdelfattah, Ph.D

Visiting Assistant Professor

Member Of:
  • School of Modern Languages

Heba Arafa Abdelfattah is visiting assistant professor of Arabic Studies in the School of Modern Languages and Literature. She completed her Ph.D. in Arabic and Islamic Studies from Georgetown University in 2017. Her research interest falls in the interdisciplinary area of humanities with special focus on modernity, religion and popular culture. She works with literary texts, archival documents, films, and artistic production to understand discourses of modernity. She is especially interested in issues of cultural production in the context Islamic legal traditions in MENA and global flows. She has conducted archival research on the reception of film by the colonial state, the nationalist elite and the Muslim clergy in twentieth century Egypt. She has published in peer-reviewed journals including Review of Middle East Studies and International Journal of Communication. She is currently working on a monograph tentatively titled "Dreams of Alternative Modernities on the Nile".

Current Research Intrests:


Alternative Modernities

Postcolonial Studies 

History of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)

Legal Theory and Legal Change  in Islam

Islam and Human Rights

History of Philosophy, Art and Science in Islam

Arabic Literature and Cinema

Cinema in MENA



Language Pedagogy

Language Policies and Politics of Identity in MENA