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Contact Info:
Tufts University
Department of Anthropology
Medford, MA 02155


Emilio Spadola
Visiting Associate Professor
President, Middle East Section, American Anthropological Association, 2016-2018

Ph.D., Columbia University, 2007
MPhil, Columbia University, 2002
B.A., Swarthmore College, 1995

Anthropology of North Africa and the Muslim World; Security and governmentally; Religion and modernity; Media and communication studies

Scholarship & Research
My current research and writing addresses Muslim politics, with a specific interest in Morocco’s and other Muslim states’ incorporations of contemporary geopolitics of security with historical forms of Islamic authority and rule. This project, funded in part by the American Institute for Maghreb Studies, builds on my ethnographic and historical work on the circulation of new media forms and modern politics in urban Morocco, that is, on the technologization and mass mediation of Muslim ritual and authority. My 2014 book, The Calls of Islam: Sufis, Islamists, and Mass Mediation in Urban Morocco (Indiana), won Honorable Mention for both the 2014 Clifford Geertz Book Prize and the 2015 L. Carl Brown Book Prize in North African Studies.

2016: Lampert Institute Research Fellowship, Colgate University
2015-2016: Research Fellowship, American Institute of Maghrib Studies (AIMS)
2015: Honorable Mention, L. Carl Brown Book Prize in North African Studies (AIMS)
2014: Honorable Mention, Clifford Geertz Book Prize (Society for the Anthropology of Religion)
2007: Postdoctoral Fellowship, Center for Global Thought, Columbia University


2014. The Calls of Islam: Sufis, Islamists, and Mass Mediation in Urban Morocco.Public Cultures of the Middle East and North Africa.Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press.

Articles and Chapters:
Forthcoming. "Mass Media in North Africa," in The Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History, edited by Allan Fromherz. Oxford University Press.

Forthcoming. "The Call of the Shrine: Destruction, Media, and Militant Reform," in Muslim Pilgrimage in the Modern World, edited by Babak Rahimi and Peyman Eshaghi. University of North Carolina Press.

Forthcoming. "The Discovery of Communication in Moroccan Modernist Thought," in The Middle East 1918-1939: Changes and Challenges, ed. Kate Fleet and Ebru Boyar. Social, Economic and Political Studies of the Middle East and Asia. Brill Press.

2015. "Rites of Reception: Trance, Technology, and National Belonging in Morocco." In Trance Mediums and New Media: Spirit Possession in the Age of Technical Reproduction, edited by Heike Behrend, Martin Zillinger, and Anja Dreschke. Fordham University Press.

2013. "Forgive Me Friend: Mohammed and Ibrahim." In Encountering Morocco: Fieldwork and Cultural Understanding, edited by David Crawford and Rachel Newcomb. Public Cultures of the Middle East and North Africa. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. 2013

2013. "Our Master’s Call: Mass Media and ‘the People’ in Morocco’s 1975 Green March." In Anthropology of the Middle East and North Africa: Into the New Millennium, edited by Susan Slyomovics and Sherine Hafez. Public Cultures of the Middle East and North Africa. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.

2011. "Forgive Me Friend: Mohammed and Ibrahim." Anthropological Quarterly. Vol. 84, No. 3, 737-756.

2009. "Writing cures: religious and communicative authority in late modern Morocco." Journal of North African Studies. Vol. 14, No. 2, 155-168.

2008. "The Scandal of Ecstasy: Communication, Sufi Rites, and Social Reform in 1930s Morocco," Contemporary Islam: Dynamics of Muslim Life. Vol. 2, No. 2, July 2008, 119-138.

2004. "Jinn, Islam, and Media in Morocco."In Yearbook of the Sociology of Islam V, edited by George Stauth and Armando Salvatore, 142-172. Hamburg: Lit, 2004.