I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Gender Studies at Lund University, Sweden. Between 2016 and 2018, I was a Postdoctoral researcher at Collegio Carlo Alberto in Turin, Italy. I hold a PhD from the Department of Political Science at the Université de Montréal, Canada. During my academic carrer I have held several visiting positions in distinct research centers at Concordia University (2018), Cornell University (2015 and 2016), University of Toronto (2013-2014) and the European University Institute (2013 and 2014).
I am a political sociologist and I specialize in the sociology of migration and critical ethnic and racial relations in the Mediterranean region. My research bridges several literatures, i.e. citizenship studies, theories of immigrants’ political incorporation, and ethnic and racial politics, with social movement studies, critical race theories and intersectionality to examine how receiving societies (especially the state and civil society organisations) exclude and racialize immigrants and ethnic minorities and how these groups respond through grassroots mobilizations.
My forthcoming book, entitled Immigrant Activism and Allies: Coalitions, Conflicts and Racialization in Hostile Environments, is under contract with Routledge in their ‘Research in Migration and Ethnic Relations’ series. Based on extensive ethnographic research that I conducted in four Italian cities between 2013 and 2014, the study analyzes the efforts immigrants and their allies of the civil society make to resist state actors’ production of exclusion and precariousness in immigrant communities after the financial crisis of 2008 in Italy. One of the main contributions of my work is to show that, in addition to state actors, immigrants’ allies often play a crucial role in excluding and racializing immigrant activists in the struggles that concern them, thereby reducing the scope of immigrants’ greater inclusion in receiving societies. Additionally, considering migrant activists as relevant political players, my research shows their role in transforming narratives about integration from below.
My research on political claims by immigrants and ethnic minorities contributes to a growing literature that applies social movement and critical race theories to ethnic and racial studies. The focus on a crucial receiving country of migrations in the Mediterranean region allows me to add important cases to the literature in field. My work has appeared in International Migration Review, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Ethnic and Racial Studies, and Southern European Society and Politics as well as in several chapters of co-authored books.
Currently, I am working on a new project titled INTERSEC_RACE/Challenging the Security/Migration Nexus after 9/11: Race Politics, Racism and Gender in the Mediterranean Region. It is about a comparative study on the nexus of contemporary racism and the securitization of migration in two Mediterranean countries—Spain and Morocco. Focusing on the evolution of selected public debates since 9/11, the study will examine how racist discourses and interlinked practices of political elites (i.e. policy makers, political parties and key intellectuals) have contributing to othering the two largest immigrant groups in each country—Moroccan ‘Arabs’ in Spain and ‘Black’ sub-Saharan Africans in Morocco—through processes of racializationa and gender-based stigmatization. It will also examine how these groups have exposed and challenged these processes through grassroots mobilizations with the help of civil society organizations. I use a mixed-qualitative method approach to conduct this research, combining multi-sited field research with discourse analysis to map the discourses and practices of key political actors and their challengers.