During the 2018-2019 academic year I am a 5th year Ph.D. candidate in both the Religion, Ethics, and Politics and the Islam subfield. I joined the two programs in 2014 and passed the general examination requirements for each in January 2017. Before coming to Princeton, I received a M.A.R. in Ethics from Yale Divinity School (2014) and a B.A. in Theology from Oxford (2012). My research and teaching interests include: ethical and legal theory, (classical) Islamic theology and philosophy, and the contemporary study of religious and comparative ethics.
My dissertation, “The Politics of Fiṭra,” uses the concept of fiṭra—prevalent in works of Islamic philosophy, often simply translated as ‘created human nature’ or ‘first nature’—as a window onto problems in the contemporary study of Islamic ethics. Specifically, I argue that uncovering the surprising role of fiṭra in political debates over the varying intellectual capacities of humans provides a crucial opportunity to reflect on Islamic ethics as a field, still dominated by unexamined prejudices, anachronism, and the assumption that all ethical thought seeks to answer an unchanging set of questions. The project thus contributes to debates in Islamic intellectual history, theology and (political) philosophy, ethical theory, and religious ethics.