Juliane Hammer

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Juliane Hammer



Ph.D., Islamic Studies, Humboldt University, Berlin, 2001
M.A., Islamic Studies (minors in Iranian studies and sociology), Humboldt University, Berlin, 1996

Fields of Specialization

Islamic Studies
Religion in the Americas

Research Interests

  • Gender and sexuality in Muslim communities and societies
  • American Muslim communities, focus on race and gender
  • Intersectional studies of American religious communities
  • Feminist studies in religion, Islamic and Muslim feminisms
  • Activism as religious practice in Muslim contexts
  • Theory and method in the study of Islam
  • Sufism and food
  • Modern and contemporary Muslim approaches to the Qur’an
  • Gender, marriage, and sexuality in religions


Trained in the study of Islam, languages, and pre-modern as well as modern Muslim societies, my scholarly trajectory has taken me from research on Palestinian women and diaspora and return experiences through a decade of work on American Muslim communities intersecting with women, gender and sexuality in contemporary Muslim contexts. I see myself in both Islamic studies and American religions, and in conversation with women’s and gender studies, sexuality studies and critical race theory. I have combined ethnographic and textual analysis methods in diverse research contexts and engage in interdisciplinary, multi-method research that does not privilege texts over lived experiences or vice versa.

I published my latest book, Peaceful Families: American Muslim Efforts against Domestic Violence, with Princeton University Press in 2019. In it, I trace religiously framed efforts in Muslim communities to raise awareness of DV and provide services. Based on six years of ethnographic research across the United States and textual analysis, the book discusses how DV advocacy work is embedded broader discourses on gender roles, marriage ideals, and processes in American society as well as transnational Muslim communities. I am currently working on several new projects, including a monograph tentatively titled, Patriarchal Islam: Gender, Sex, and Love in the Muslim American Public Square. In this book, I focus on gender, marriage, and sexuality as central to contemporary religious discourse and practice as reflected in American Muslim communal debates in multi-faceted ways. I focus communal debates, including sex education, male leadership and sexual integrity, women’s mosques, matrimonial practices, homosexuality, and domestic violence in the Muslim American public square. I am also working on several articles: on Muslim attitudes to and inclusion of LGBTQI+ Muslims, on the interdependence of racial and religious hierarchies in the production of anti-Muslim hostility in the United States and Europe, and on an exploration of Muslim contributions to intersectionality as theory and practice.


  • RELI 064, Re-Introducing Islam (FYS)
  • RELI 181, Modern Muslim Societies
  • RELI 185, Women/Gender/Islam
  • RELI 248, Introduction to American Islam
  • RELI 385, Modern Muslims and the Qur’an
  • RELI 580, African American Islam
  • RELI 581, Sufism
  • RELI 780, Method and Pedagogy in Islamic Studies
  • RELI 782, Islam and Gender Reform



Peaceful Families: American Muslim Efforts against Domestic Violence. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2019.

Muslim Women and Gender Justice: Concepts, Sources, and Histories, co-edited with Dina El Omari and Mouhanad Khorchide. London: Routledge, 2019.

The Cambridge Companion to American Islam, co-edited with Omid Safi. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

American Muslim Women, Religious Authority, and Activism: More Than a Prayer. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2012.

A Jihad for Justice: Honoring the Work and Life of Amina Wadud, co-edited with Kecia Ali and Laury Silvers. e-book (2012), available online at http://unc.academia.edu/JulianeHammer.

Palestinians Born in Exile: Diaspora and the Search for a Homeland. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2005.


“Gender Matters: Normativity, Positionality, and the Politics of Islamic Studies,” special issue of the Muslim World 106 (October 2016) on “Shifting Boundaries: The Study of Islam in the Humanities”: 655-670.

“To Work for Change: Normativity, Feminism, and Islam,” part of “Normativity in Islamic Studies” roundtable, Journal of the American Academy of Religion 84:1 (March 2016): 98-112.

“Marriage in American Muslim Communities,” Religion Compass, 9:2 (2015): 35-44.

“Gendering Islamophobia: (Muslim) Women’s Bodies and American Politics,” Bulletin for the Study of Religion 42:1 (February 2013): 29-36.

“Gender Justice in a Prayer: American Muslim Women’s Exegesis, Authority, and Leadership,” Hawwa: Journal of Women of the Middle East and the Islamic World 8:1 (Spring 2010): 26-54.

“Performing Gender Justice: The 2005 Woman-Led Prayer in New York,” Contemporary Islam, special issue on Muslims and Media, 4:1 (April 2010): 91-116.

“Identity, Authority and Activism: American Muslim Women’s Approaches to the Qur’an,” in The Muslim World 98:4 (October 2008): 442-463.

“The Soul of Islam: Writing and Publishing as Engaged Sufism,” in Journal for Islamic Studies 26 (2006): 36-70.