Writers

The New Middle East blog is authored by academics connected to the research center called Centre for Islamic and Middle East Studies (CIMS ) based at the University of Oslo.  There are several researchers at CIMS, each working with their own academic interests within CIMS’s subjects and areas of study.

Tine Gade
Tine Gade

Political scientist by training, Tine Gade is an Arabist and a specialist on the Middle East. Her research interests include Sunni Islamism and secterianism in Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq, as well as the regional struggle between Iran and the Gulf monarchies. On the theoretical level, she engages with questions related to political and religious authority; patronage and clientelism; youths, socialization and activism; and social movement theory. She has also worked on the question of women Salafis. Currently, she is working on a book project based on her PhD thesis and participates in a CMI project on civil-military relations in Lebanon (led by Are J. Knudsen).

Albrecht Hofheinz
Albrecht Hofheinz

Albrecht Hofheinz is an Associate Professor at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called “the Social Media as a Window on Political and Ideological Trends in the Arab World.” The project documents and analyses major political-ideological trends that are observable in and strengthened through social media, in three of the most populous Arab States (Egypt, Morocco, Sudan).

Jacob Høigilt
Jacob Høigilt

Jacob Høigilt is a senior researcher at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). His work concentrates on Islamism, sociolinguistics, and grassroots political activism, with a focus on Palestine and Egypt. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called “Religion and Political Activism among Youth in the West Bank and Gaza after 2007”. Among his latest publications are “Prophets in Their Own Country? Hizb al-Tahrir in the Palestinian Context” (Politics, Religion and Society, 2014) and (with Frida Nome) “Egyptian Salafism in Revolution” (Journal of Islamic Studies, Spring 2014).

Kai Kverme
Kai Kverme

Kai Kverme is a Researcher at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called “Transnational Religious Networks and Gulf States Influence”. With the outbreak of a popular uprising in Syria, which has turned into a de facto civil war, Lebanon has become a hub for all sides in the conflict. Money, weapons and foreign fighters enter Syria, but also religious ideas and ideologies, through transnational networks originating or ending up in Lebanon. His recent publications include “Han var vår lærer” : Hizballah etter Fadlallah. Babylon – Nordisk tidsskrift for Midtøstenstudier. (2012)

Bård Kårtveit
Bård Kårtveit

Bård Kårtveit is based at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo, and is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called “Being a Coptic Man. Masculinity, gender relations and boundary maintenance among Egyptian Copts”. Completed a Master degree in Social Anthropology at the University of Bergen in 2003, with a study on Palestinian return-migration from the USA to the West Bank during the ‘Oslo-years’. Between 2006 and 2010 he was a PhD Scholar at the University of Bergen, where he worked on a project focusing on identity, belonging and emigration among Christian Palestinians. Since completing his thesis, he has taught Middle Eastern Studies at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages, and coordinated a research project on civil-military relations in the Middle East and Latin America, based at Chr. Michelsen Institute in Bergen.

Brynjar Lia
Brynjar Lia

Brynjar Lia is an Associate Professor at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called “The Syria Conflict and the Future of Jihadism in the Middle East”. The ongoing civil war in Syria is expected to have multiple and long-term consequences for the region. One of the oft-mentioned fallouts is the increased visibility and growing military strength of the jihadi current, especially the “al-Qaida in Iraq and the Levant” (AQIL) whose large number of foreign fighters and territorial consolidation in Northern Syria are considered a particular menacing threat. His recent publications include “Jihadistbevegelsen i den arabiske verden før og etter 2011″Babylon: Nordisk tidsskrift for midtøstenstudier, and “Norske muslimske fremmedkrigere”, Nytt Norsk Tidsskrift.

Laila Makboul
Laila Makboul

Laila Makboul is a Phd Researcher at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo and a Research Fellow on the project “The New Middle East; Emerging political and ideological trends” with Saudi Arabia as point of research. She holds an M.A. in Middle Eastern and North African Studies with the thesis titled: “The construction of one true Islam in Saudi Arabian textbooks: an analysis of Saudi national identity through the teachings of tawhid” (Norwegian).

Rania Maktabi
Rania Maktabi

Rania Maktabi a Researcher at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. She is currently researching questions related to citizenship and statelessness in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). She focus particularly on comparing female citizenship and women’s civil rights within the state’s family law, nationality law and criminal law in Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria and Qatar. Her recent publications include “Female citizenship in Syria: Framing the 2009 controversy over personal status law”, In Raymond Hinnebusch & Tina Zintl (ed.),  Syria from reform to revolt: Vol. 1: Political economy and international relations (2014).

Dina Rosenberg
Dina Rosenberg

Dina Rosenberg is a master student at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. She is currently writing her master thesis as part of the project “The New Middle East; Emerging political and ideological trends”. Her field of research focuses on Egyptian civil society, specifically civil organisations led by Syrian refugees in Cairo.

Tilde Rosmer
Tilde Rosmer

Dr Tilde Rosmer is a Researcher at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. She is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called: “The Islamic Movement in Israel: Islamism in the Jewish State” focused on Israeli social movements dominated by Jews of Middle Eastern and North African origin. Her recent publications include “Israel’s Middle Eastern Jewish Intellectuals: Identity and Discourse” (The British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 2014), “Resisting ‘Israelization’: The Islamic Movement in Israel and the Realization of Islamization, Palestinization and Arabization” (Journal of Islamic Studies, 2012) and ‘The Islamic Movement in the Jewish State’ (Political Islam, Context versus Ideology, ed. Khaled Hroub, 2010).

Erling Lorentzen Sogge
Erling Lorentzen Sogge

Erling Lorentzen Sogge is a PhD Researcher at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo and a Research Fellow on the project “The New Middle East; Emerging political and ideological trends”. His main field of research concentrates on society and politics in the Palestinian refugee camps of Lebanon, and in particular the role played by the various Palestinian Islamists movements in organizing the camp societies from the inside.

Pinar Tank
Pinar Tank

Pinar Tank is a senior researcher at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO). She is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called: “Turkey´s AKP and the politics of contention”. The research focuses broadly on Turkey’s domestic and foreign policies. In the realm of foreign policy, this includes Turkey’s regional role, uses of soft power and resulting identity shifts. In the domestic arena, my research has been related to the Kurdish issue and political Islam. In addition, Tank maintain interest in civil-military relations in transitional democracies. Among here latest publications are “Tilbake til pragmatismen: Tyrkias Syria-politikk” [A return to pragmatism: Turkey’s Syria policy], Internasjonal Politikk.

Dag Henrik Tuastad
Dag Henrik Tuastad

Dag Tuastad holds a doctoral degree in Anthropology and is an Associate Professor at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called: “State, family and patriarchy: Political implications of changing inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations and marriage patterns”. His main research has been on Palestinian politics, including studies on the role of kinship in Palestinian politics, Hamas’ consept of a long-term ceasefire, and the democratization process in the PLO. He is currently working as a researcher on the New Middle East project at the Center for Islamic and Middle East Studies at the University of Oslo. His recent publications include “From football riot to revolution. The political role of football in the Arab world.” Soccer & Society (2014).

Bjørn Olav Utvik
Bjørn Olav Utvik

Bjørn Olav Utvik is Professor in Middle East History and Director of the Centre for Islamic and Middle East Studies at  the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo. He is currently working on a research sub-project at NewME called: “A Choice between Piety or Progress? Islamist Developments in Egypt and the GCC countries”. His main research interest has been political Islam, with a special focus on Egypt and Iran. He is the author of The Pious Road to Development: Islamist Economics in Egypt (2006), Islamismen (2011, in Norwegian) and Oil States in the New Middle East: Uprisings & Stability (with Kjetil Selvik, eds., forthcoming 2015).