Sunaina Maira, Ph.D.

Sunaina Maira

Position Title

Asian American Studies

3109 Hart Hall

Research Interests: Youth culture; popular culture; political activism and transnational solidarity movements; South Asian, Arab, and Afghan American studies; the War on Terror; surveillance; U.S. empire; comparative and transnational ethnic studies.

Sunaina Maira is Professor of Asian American Studies, and is affiliated with the Middle East/South Asia Studies program and with the Cultural Studies Graduate Group. Her research and teaching focus on Asian American youth culture and the politics of cultural production as well as political mobilization and transnational movements challenging militarization, imperialism, and settler colonialism. She is the author of Desis in the House: Indian American Youth Culture in New York City and Missing: Youth, Citizenship, and Empire After 9/11. She co-edited Contours of the Heart: South Asians Map North America, which won the American Book Award in 1997, and Youthscapes: The Popular, the National, and the Global.

Maira’s recent publications include a book based on ethnographic research, Jil [Generation] Oslo: Palestinian Hip Hop, Youth Culture, and the Youth Movement (Tadween), and a volume co-edited with Piya Chatterjee, The Imperial University: Academic Repression and Scholarly Dissent (University of Minnesota Press). Her new book project is a study of South Asian, Arab, and Afghan American youth and political movements focused on civil and human rights and issues of sovereignty and surveillance in the War on Terror. Maira launched a new section on West Asian American Studies in the Association for Asian American Studies and coedited a special issue of the Journal of Asian American Studies on Asian/Arab American studies intersections. She has been involved with various civil and human rights campaigns and antiwar groups in the Bay Area and nationally.

Select Publications

2014                “Surveillance Effects: South Asian, Arab, and Afghan American Youth in the War on Terror.” In At the Limits of Justice: Women of Color on Terror, edited by Suvendrini Perera and Sherene H. Razack (pp. 86-106). Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

2014                “Dissenting Citizenship: South Asian Muslim Youth in the United States after 9/11.” In Youth Cultures in the Age of Global Media, edited by David Buckingham, Sara Bragg, and Mary J. Kehily (pp. 104-118). Houndsmill, UK and New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

2013                “’A Strip, A Land, A Blaze’: Arab American Hip-Hop and Transnational Politics.” In Between the Middle East and the Americas: The Cultural Politics of Diaspora, edited by Evelyn Alsultany and Ella Shohat (pp. 195-213). Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

2012                “Gender, terror, and counter-terrorism: Muslim American Youth Activism and Disappeared Rights.” In Gender, National Security, and Counter-Terrorism: Human Rights Perspectives, edited by Margaret L. Satterthwaite and Jayne C. Huckerby (pp. 60-81). London and New York: Routledge.

2012                “Hip Hop from ’48 Palestine: Youth, Music, and the Present/Absent” (co-authored with Magid Shihade). Social Text 112 30(3): 1-26.

2010                “Citizenship and Dissent: South Asian Muslim Youth in the U.S. After 9/11.” South Asian Popular Culture8(1): 31-45 (April).

2009                “‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ Muslim Citizens: Feminists, Terrorists, and U.S. Orientalisms,” Feminist Studies 35(3): 631-656.

2009                “Migrant and Minority Youth in the U.S.: Rights, Belonging, and Exclusion.” European Journal of Child and Youth Research 4(12): 116-121.

2008                “Flexible Citizenship/Flexible Empire: South Asian Muslim Youth in Post-9/11 America.” American Quarterly 60(3): 697-720 (September).

2008                “Belly Dancing: Arab-Face, Orientalist Feminism, and U.S. Empire.” American Quarterly 60(2): 317-345 (June).

2007                “Deporting Radicals, Deporting La Migra: The Hayat Case in Lodi.” Cultural Dynamics 19(1): 39-66.  

2006                “Meeting Asian/Arab American Studies,” co-authored with Magid Shihade, and “Guest Editor’s Preface.” Journal of Asian American Studies, 9(2): ix-xiii, 117-140, special issued edited by myself.