Sarah Gualtieri

Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity, History and Middle East Studies
Sarah M.A. Gualtieri
Pronouns She / Her / Hers Email gualtier@usc.edu Office KAP 449B Office Phone (213) 740-5434

Research & Practice Areas

Middle East Diaspora, Race and Ethnicity, Revolution and Occupation, History of Syria

Center, Institute & Lab Affiliations

  • The USC Annenberg Summer Institute on Diversity in Media and Culture 16-20 June 2014 Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism U of Southern California, Participant/Presenter

Biography

Dr. Sarah M.A. Gualtieri is Professor in the Departments of American Studies and Ethnicity, History and Middle East Studies. She holds an Honors B.A. in History from McGill University and an M.A.in Middle East Studies and Ph.D. in Middle East History from the University of Chicago. Her research and teaching bridge several fields, notably Middle East Migration Studies, Arab American Studies, and Critical Ethnic Studies with a particular focus on questions of race, gender, and power. She conducts research in Arabic, French, Spanish and English.  

Gualtieri’s publications include two books and a number of peer-reviewed articles. Her first book, Between Arab and White: Race and Ethnicity in the Early Syrian American Diaspora (University of California Press, 2009) examines the history of Arab racial formation in the United States with a particular focus on the problematic of “whiteness.” It traces how Arabs came to be officially classified as white by the U.S. government, and how different Arab groups interpreted, accepted, or contested this racial classification over the course of the 20th century.

Gualtieri’s second book, Arab Routes: Pathways to Syrian California was published by Stanford University Press in its Comparative Race and Ethnicity Series ( Fall 2019). The book uncovers the stories of Syrian, Lebanese and Palestinian migrants in Southern California, focusing on connections to and through Latin America and the multiethnic solidarities that emerge from them. Arab Routes won the Arab American Book Award and the Alixa Naff Prize in Migration Studies. See https://www.sup.org/books/title/?id=29385

At USC, Professor Gualtieri teaches undergraduate courses on “Women and Revolution in the Middle East,” the “Modern Middle East”, “Race and Class in Los Angeles,” and “Arabs in America.” She teaches several graduate seminars, including “Interdisciplinary Approaches to Race and Ethnicity,” and has supervised  Ph.D. theses on topics ranging from U.S. imperial interests in the Middle East, to Afro-Arab encounters, and Palestinian cinematic activism. Gualtieri served for two years as  Director of Graduate Studies for the department of American Studies and Ethnicity, overseeing admissions and professionalization. 

Gualtieri has received numerous national fellowships, including those from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH); American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS); and Social Science Research Council (SSRC); as well as several competitive USC awards, such as the ‘Advancing Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences Sabbatical’; and the Zumberge Research and Innovation Individual Faculty Grant. She is also the recipient of two undergraduate teaching awards.

Gualtieri is Visiting Professor at Princeton University in Spring 2023 and will serve as Interim Chair of the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at USC beginning mid-August 2023. 

Education

  • B.A. History, McGill University
  • M.A. Middle East Studies, University of Chicago
  • Ph.D. Middle East History, University of Chicago
  • USC Funding

    • Advancing Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences . “Arab Angelenos: Syrian Immigrants and Inter-Ethnic Relations in Los Angeles, 1880-1945” $22,000, 2010-2011
  • Conference Presentations

    • Out of Ann Arbor: Edward Said and Arab American Studies Talk/Oral Presentation, Center for American Studies and Research, American, Invited, Beirut, Lebanon , 2014-2015
    • Historical Ethnography of Palestinian Circulations , Middle East Studies AssociationTalk/Oral Presentation, New Orleans, LA, Fall 2013
    • Arabness Unbound: Syrian Migrants in Southern California and their Transnational Imaginaries 1880-1945 Talk/Oral Presentation, Burkle Center for International Relatins, Invited, University of California Los Angeles, Spring 2013
    • ‘Strange Fruit’?: Syrian Racialization in the Jim Crow South. , Middle East Studies Association ConferenceTalk/Oral Presentation, Washington, D.C., Fall 2012
    • The Arab Uprisings: Media Representations of Women and Youth , Middle East Studies ConferenceTalk/Oral Presentation, Invited, Denver, Colorado, Fall 2012
    • Linking Arab American and Other Ethnic Studies: What the History of Syrian Immigration to Los Angeles Tells Us about Inter-Ethnic Relations. , Levantine MigrationsTalk/Oral Presentation, North Carolina State University, Spring 2012
    • Arabs in Pre-World War II Los Angeles: Bringing Arab American Studies into Conversation with other Ethnic Studies Fields Talk/Oral Presentation, Invited, Smith College, Northampton, MA, Fall 2011
    • Arab Angelenos: Syrian Immigrants to Los Angeles, 1880-1945 , Middle Eastern Migrants: New PerspectivesLecture/Seminar, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizat, Invited, Princeton University, Spring 2011
    • “Arab Angelenos: Syrian Immigrants to Los Angeles, 1880-1945” , Middle Eastern Migrants: New PerspectivesTalk/Oral Presentation, Invited, Princeton University, 03/23/2011 – 03/24/2011
    • “A Short History of the Lebanese in Los Angeles: Community Building in a Multi-racial Landscape” , Arab American Historical Foundation ConferenceTalk/Oral Presentation, Invited, University of Southern California, Fall 2009
    • “How Whiteness Travels: Lebanese Immigrants and Debates on Racial Belonging in the Los Angeles, 1875-1945.” Talk/Oral Presentation, American Studies Association, Fall 2009
    • Re-inventing the Enemy Within: Anti-Arab and Islamophobic Legal Discourse and Practice Beyond September 11th. Roundtable/Panel, Invited, UCLA School of Law, Fall 2009
    • From Lebanon to Louisiana: ‘Afifa Karam and Arab Women’s Writing in the Diaspora , Conference on Arab American WomenTalk/Oral Presentation, Kansas State University, Invited, Manhattan, Kansas, Spring 2009
    • “Performing Orientalism: Inscribing Whiteness.” Roundtable/Panel, Invited, UCLA School of Law, Spring 2008
    • “Who is an Arab: The Religious Dimensions of a Pan-Ethnic Identity in the United States.” , Organization of American HistoriansTalk/Oral Presentation, New York, Spring 2008
    • “Who is an Arab? Religious Dimensions of a Pan-Ethnic Identity in the United States” , Organization of American HistoriansTalk/Oral Presentation, Invited, New York City, Spring 2008
    • “Arab American Activism in the Wake of the 1967 War.” , Middle East Studies AssociationTalk/Oral Presentation, Boston, MA, Fall 2007
    • “Arab American Activism in the Wake of the 1967 War.” , American Studies AssociationTalk/Oral Presentation, Oakland, CA, Fall 2006
    • “Sources for the Study of Arab American History.” , Arab-American History ConferenceTalk/Oral Presentation, Arab-American Historical Foundation, Invited, Los Angeles, CA, Fall 2006
    • “Representing ‘Little Syria’: Early Syrian Immigrants and American Orientalism.” , Mapping Arab Diasporas: Border Crossing, Exile and DisplacementTalk/Oral Presentation, Invited, University of Michigan, Dearborn, Spring 2006
    • “Arab-Americans.” Roundtable/Panel, Annenberg School for Communication and the Social , Invited, University of Southern California, Fall 2005
    • “The Politics of Counting: Arab Racial Classification on the U.S. Census” , UCLA/SSRC Summer Institute on International MigrationTalk/Oral Presentation, Los Angeles, CA, 2003-2004
    • “What Race are the Arabs? Racial Classification on the U.S. Census Past and Present.” Talk/Oral Presentation, Invited, Lebanese Emigration Research CenterCenter, Notre Dame University, Zouk Mosbeh, L, 2003-2004
    • “The Lynching of Nicholas Romey: Syrian Racial In-betweenness in the American South.” , Conference on the Lebanese DiasporaTalk/Oral Presentation, Beirut, Lebanon, 2001-2002
    • “The Nation in the Mahjar: the Syrian National Imaginary on the Eve of World War One” , Middle East Studies Association ConferenceTalk/Oral Presentation, San Francisco, CA, Fall 2001

    Other Presentations

    • Respondent to Nadine Naber, “Diasporas of Empire: An Anti-Imperialist Arab Feminist Critique”, ASE Commons, University of Southern California, 2012-2013
    • “Performing Orientalism, Inscribing Whiteness.”, Seminar, , 2007-2008
  • Book

    • Gualtieri, S. M. Arab Routes: Pathways to Syrian California. Stanford ed.University Press.2019. See book details here
    • Gualtieri, Sarah M.A.; Suad, Joseph; Booth, Marilyn; Shehabuddin, Elora (Ed.). (2013). Women and Islamic Cultures: Disciplinary Paradigms and Approaches 2003-2013. Leiden: Brill.
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2009). Between Arab and White: Race and Ethnicity in the Early Syrian American Diaspora. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. Read about this book here

    Book Chapters

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2014). From Lebanon to Louisiana: ‘Afifa Karam and Arab Diasporic Feminism. Arab American Women Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press.
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2008). Strange Fruit?: Syrian Immigrants, Extralegal Violence, and Racial Formation in the United States. pp. 22. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press. Read about this article here

    Book Review

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2010). We are All Moors: Ending Centuries of Crusades Against Muslim and Other Minorities. Journal of American Ethnic History.
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2000). Elizabeth Thompson, Colonial Citizens: Republican Rights, Paternal Privilege and Gender in French Syria and Lebanon; Colonial Effects:The making of National Identity in Jordan. Radical History Review..
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (1997). Review of Kathleen M. Moore, Al-Mughtaribun: American Law and the Transformation of Muslim Life in the United States. Journal of Religion. pp. 500-502,750 words..

    Encyclopedia Article

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2004). Syrians” and “Lebanese. (James Grossman ., Ed.).500 words each.. Encyclopedia of Chicago History./University of Chicago Press.

    Journal Article

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2004). Gendering the Chain Migration Thesis: Women and Syrian Transatlantic Migration. Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East. pp. 69-80.
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2001). Becoming “White”: Race, Religion, and the Formation of Syrian/Lebanese Ethnicity in the United States. Journal of American Ethnic History, University of Illinois Press. pp. 29-58.

    Magazine/Trade Publication

    • Gualtieri, S. M.Migration and the Formation of Immigrant Communities: an Historiographical Essay. In the final report of the Area Studies, Regional Worlds Program of the Globalization Project./University of Chicago.. PubMed Web Address

    Newsletter

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2009). Syrian Immigrants and Debates on Racial Belonging in Los Angeles, 1875-1945. Syrian Studies Newsletter.

    Essay Translation

    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2006). Translation from Arabic of “Should Women have All the Rights of Men. Modern Middle East Sourcebook Project.

    Other

    • Gualtieri, S. M., Khater, A. (2014). Special Issue on Gender and Diaspora. Mashriq/Mahjar.
    • Gualtieri, S. M. (2009). Between Arab and White, American Constitution Society.
    • National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship Recipient, , 2016-2017
    • “Arab Angelenos,” Advancing Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences, 2010-2011
    • American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship Recipient, Charles A. Ryskamp Research Fellowship, 2008-2009
    • USC Provost’s Arts and Humanities Initiative (“Visions and Voices”), 2007-2008
    • General Education Teaching Award for Arts and Letters Course “Women and Revolution in the Middle East” , 2006-2007
    • USC Zumberge Research and Innovation Fund Award, , 2006/07/01-2007/07/01
    • Fulbright Award, , 1996-1997
  • Administrative Appointments

    • Director, 08/16/2013-08/15/2014
  • Editorships and Editorial Boards

    • Responsible for soliciting articles for the Americas and for conducting outreach to the community on issues related to Muslim women., Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Culture”, 2012 –
    • Editorial Board, Mashriq/Mahjar”, 2012 – 2017

    Other Service to the Profession

    • Consultant for the PBS Documentary, “Faces of America with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.,” in which the Harvard scholar turns to the latest tools of genealogy and genetics to explore the family histories of 12 renowned Americans. See http://www.pbs.org/wnet/facesofamerica/. Served as consultant Jun. – Nov., 2009.
      , 2008-2009