Erin Atwell

Advisor(s): Tahera Qutbuddin
Arabic Language and Literature

Academic Bio

Erin Atwell is a Ph.D. Candidate in Classical Arabic Literature and Anthropology working on intersections of classical Islamic texts and contemporary Muslim practices. Her dissertation, “Fearing God: Taqwa in the Early Islamic Moment and its Reimagination in Contemporary Egyptian Preaching” draws on textual and ethnographic research to argue that in disparate times and places Islamic expressions of godfearingness (having taqwā) come to index ruptures, shifts, and unexpected continuities in societal orientations towards the divine. Her research and teaching interests include religious ethics, the first Hijri century, biblical and rabbinic traditions of godfearingness, Arabic oration, bodily practice and embodiment, and the temporalities of religious traditions. Erin holds an M.A. from the University of Chicago Divinity School, an M.A. from Fordham University, and a B.A. from Loyola University Chicago. Her current research is supported by the Fulbright U.S. Student Program and the University of Chicago’s Martin Marty Center for the Public Understanding of Religion, Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, and Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory.