Search Files Podcast: Knowledge Production and Pedagogy on the Middle East
Hosted by Bassam Haddad and Mekarem Eljamal
Decolonizing Anthropology and Opening Palestine Maps
Girish Daswani, University of Toronto
Ahmad Barclay, Visualizing Impact
Cosponsored by the George Mason University Middle East & Islamic Studies Program, Middle East Studies Pedagogy Initiative, Knowledge Production Project, and status/الوضع Podcast
In this episode of Search Files, Ahmad Barclay discusses the role of open source data and mapping on Palestine studies, and the project's contribution to cartographic research and analysis more generally. Girish Daswani speaks about his research on what it means to decolonize anthropology and how that work appears in the classroom.
Girish Daswani (he/him) is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Toronto, which is part of the Dish with One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant and home to many Indigenous peoples included the Wendat, the Seneca, and the Mississauguas of the Credit. He is currently working on activist, artistic, and religious responses to political corruption in Ghana. His public facing work has explored the ways in which colonialism, Orientalism, and imperialism have impacted, and are still impacting popular politics, the University, and the field of Anthropology.
Ahmad Barclay is an architect and UX designer engaged in projects involving data visualization, visual storytelling and learning through play. He has led award winning infographics projects as a partner with Visualizing Impact, initiated the open data project Palestine Open Maps, contributed to a variety of publications, and facilitated courses and workshops based on his practices in Beirut, London, Lisbon, Amman and Bangalore. Ahmad is presently leading data visualization work for the 2021 Census at the Office for National Statistics (UK).
Mekarem Eljamal is a doctoral student of urban planning at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation. Her current research looks at de- and re-territorialization processes across “mixed-cities” within Israel. She received dual Masters degrees in Middle Eastern and North African Studies and Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Michigan. She has worked as the Title VI grant coordinator for the University of Michigan International Institute. Eljamal is currently the managing editor for the Middle East Studies Pedagogy Initiative of the Arab Studies Institute and an affiliate editor for History@Work, the blog for the National Council on Public History.