Noha Forster

Lecturer of Arabic Languages

B.A. American University in Cairo.
M.A. Princeton University.
Teaching at Chicago since 2002.

Special Interests

Anthropological approaches to religious studies, Popular vs. "Orthodox" Islam, Religion and Politics in Egypt, Mechanisms for change of Shari'a Law, Devising tools for student self-evaluation of Arabic acquisition.

Honors & Grants

  • American Research Center in Egypt Fellowship, 1984-1985
  • American University in Cairo “Highest Honors”, June  1979
  • American University in Cairo “Outstanding Achievement”, 1977, 1979


Academic Lectures & Conferences: Lectures presented

Arabic Children’s Literature, February 6, 2009
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)

-  What Do We Mean By “Cosmopolitanism’ ?: The Case of Alexandria, March 19, 2008
(Presented to International Women Associates, Chicago)

- On Dancing, Death, and the Dichotomy of ‘Modern’ and ‘Traditional’ Islam in Egypt, February 11, 2008
(Islam and Modernity Workshop, U. of Chicago)

My Alexandria: Reminiscences, Contestations,  January 25, 2008                           

-  Sufi and Anti-Sufi Discourses in an Egyptian Village, April 6-7, 2007
(Duke-UNC Graduate Islamic Studies Conference)                               

- Arabs on the Web, November 17, 2006
- Shaykhs and Effendis: The Decline of Ulama Prestige in Egypt, April 28, 2006        
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)          

- The History & Culture of Egypt & North Africa . Presentation to staff of the CIS (Citizenship & Immigration Services,formerly the INS) as part of the CMES Public Education Project John Marshall Law School       
June 13 & 16, 2005

- Nostalgia, Or, The Manners & Customs of the Very Modern Egyptians, Jan. 21,2005
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)                  

- How Do We Study Ourselves? Reflections on Fieldwork in an Egyptian Village, Oct. 29, 2004
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle) 

- Ulama and Sufis in an Egyptian Village, May 7, 2004
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle) 

- Being an Egyptian-American: What does the hyphen mean?  Lecture presented to the Young Egyptian Intellectuals First Annual Conference held at  De Paul University, April 18, 2004

-  Egyptian or Arab?: An old/new debate ,  January 30, 2004
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle) 

- Four Egyptian Women Activists, Feb. 21, 2003
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)

- Legal Reforms Affecting Women in Egypt,  Feb. 19, 2003 
(delivered to International Women’s Association of Chicago)

- Women in the Village of Bani ‘Adi, May 1997
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)

- Stereotypes of Middle Eastern Women, April 1996
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)

- Fieldwork in an Egyptian Village, March 1993
(University of Chicago Arabic Circle)

- The Establishment of a Non-Radical, Middle East Studies Association, Oct. 1992
Islamic Movement in an Egyptian Village  Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon

- Arab Reactions to the Islamic Revolution    University of Chicago,  April 1987 in Iran                                         Middle East History & Theory Conference

- Women in Egypt: Law, Culture & Religion   Princeton University, May 1986

- Fieldwork on Islam in Bani ‘Adi     American Research Center in Egypt, Jan. 1986