Mark Juergensmeyer Best Dissertation Award Runners up ($250 each) and Special Mentions
Runners up ($250 each)
1. Irmak Yazici, Seeing through Secularism: What Religious Controversies can tell in India
and Turkey Political Science, University of Hawaii at Manoa, May 2022
Irmak Yazici’s dissertation is a theoretically sophisticated and empirically rigorous inquiry into the trajectory and contemporary evolution of secularism in India and Turkey, showing how it has facilitated the crystallization of religious nationalism in both countries. It argues that the politics of secularism generates and manipulates religious controversies (such as reflected in the controversies over the fiction of Salman Rushdie and Orhon Palmuk) through exploring it as a source of political contestation, true to her assertion that the modern state always prefers to deal with religious ideologies rather than with faiths.
2. Misbah Hyder, Empowerment through Submission: Conceptualizing Ahmadiyya Muslim Agency as Sabr Political Science, UC Irvine, December 2022
Misbah Hyder has written a powerful dissertation on the Ahmadiyya community, an often-persecuted offshoot within Muslim culture seeking to reclaim its identity despite being denied by Muslims globally and contrasting the community’s survival in Pakistan and in Ghana. More than a valuable ethnographic account, Hyder offers a conceptual understanding of the movement’s persistence and its reliance on sabr, translated as patience or perseverance. She skillfully shows that this is not just a mode of response but a socio-political form of resistance and survival that, in focusing on their ethical intentionality, has applicability to similar minority communities around the world.
Honorable Mention certificates
1. Simon Polinder
Towards a New Christian Political Realism? The Amsterdam School of Philosophy and the Role of Religion in International Relations, VU Amsterdam, June 2021
2. Elizabeth Moorhouse-Stein
Pushback Organizations: Cohesion and Division among Jews in the United States, France, and Canada Political Studies, Queens University, August 2023
3. Aidan Milliff
Seeking Safety: The Cognitive Foundations of Civilian Behavior during Violence, Political Science, MIT, September 2022
4. Emma Rosenberg
Rally around the Steeple: Religious Rhetoric and Nativist Parties in Central Europe Political Science, Notre Dame, May 2022