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Dr Menna Abukhadra

Dr Menna Abukhadra

Israel Institute Post-doctoral Fellow, Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, the University of Cambridge.


Office Phone: 01223 335333

Biography:

I am an Israel institute postdoctoral fellow at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, the University of Cambridge. And I am a Lecturer of Hebrew Language and literature at Cairo University in Egypt. As an Arab researcher in general, and Egyptian researcher in particular, I have always been interested in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, where I was influenced by articles, books, and research papers of various Arab scholars. But despite of this variety, all the aforementioned sources were representing only one mainstream perspective of the Israeli society. Therefore, I decided to learn Hebrew language and literature at Cairo university. As I believed that Hebrew literature it is one of the best ways to get information about what’s really happening in the Israeli society and also to understand the truth behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from a different perspective.

I was awarded my B.A degree in 2008 from the Department of Oriental Languages Cairo University. I was graduated with excellent grade and ranked first of my class. Afterwards, I started working as an assistant lecturer of Modern Hebrew language and literature teaching undergraduate Hebrew courses. I also gave undergraduate beginner’s Hebrew courses in the center of Oriental languages in Giza Egypt.

In 2011 I was awarded my M.A degree, my desertion title was “Mass Suicide and its Reflections on Modern Hebrew Poetry: Analytical and critical study”. The main aim of it was to study the various explanations of the mass suicide that Jewish committed in Massada throughout the history by analyzing Yitzhak Lamdan’s famous poem Massada. And how this image of Jews preferring suicide over becoming prisoners became a metaphor to represent the sacrifice and loyalty to the Jewish nation.

In 2016 I was awarded my PhD degree, my thesis title was “The Four Matriarchs of Israel in Hebrew Israeli Poetry: Analytical Critical Study of some chosen Hebrew Poems”. The main issue of my study was to state how the Hebrew writers in general and Hebrew poets in particular used the Old Testament tales and characters to express different social and political contemporary issues. The main focus in my thesis was on the Four Matriarchs - Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah the wives of the Three Patriarchs: Abraham, Isaac and Jacob “The Patriarchs”. I study how Israeli poets recalled these characters and employed them - according to the poet’s own ideological background - in a religious, political and a Zionist manner that serve their own agendas depending on the prevailing circumstances.

I have been teaching modern Hebrew language and literature since 2008, first at Cairo university and now at the Faculty of Asian and middle eastern studies. And the courses I currently teach are related mainly to my research interests.

Education

  • PhD. (with Distinction) Department of Oriental Languages, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University. 2011 –2016). Thesis title: “The Four Matriarchs of Israel in Hebrew Israeli Poetry: Analytical Critical Study of some chosen Hebrew Poems”.
  • M.A. (with Distinction) Department of Oriental Languages, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University 2009 – 2011. Title of thesis: “Mass Suicide and its Reflections on Modern Hebrew Poetry: Analytical and critical study”.
  • Licentiate Arts, Department of Oriental Languages, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, 2004 - 2008. Major: Modern Hebrew Language and Literature
    Cumulative grade: Excellent “First of the class”. 

 

Teaching and Professional Experience

  • Postdoctoral research fellow at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, The Israeli institute post-Doc fellowship. 2018 – Present.
  • Lecturer (Modern Hebrew Language and Literature), Oriental Languages department, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt. 2016 – 2017.
  • Assistant Lecturer (Modern Hebrew Language and Literature), Oriental Languages department, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt. 2011 – 2016.
  • Demonstrator (Modern Hebrew Language and Literature), Oriental Languages department, Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt. 2009 – 2011
  • Instructor at the Oriental Studies Center, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt. [Part Time] 2009 – 2011
  • Instructor at the institute of foreign language "T-E-A-M" Egypt. [Part Time] 2010 – 2011
  • Intern, Nile TV. Hebrew program, Cairo, Egypt. Guest speaker in Hebrew talk shows. 2007 – 2008
  • Intern, Egyptian Radio, Hebrew program, Cairo, Egypt. 2006 – 2007

Subject groups/Research projects

Hebrew & Semitic Studies:

Research Interests

Modern Hebrew literature, Modern Hebrew Poetry, the history of Zionism, the Israeli Palestinian conflict, Israeli women and gender studies, Israel studies in the Arab world, Israel studies in Egypt.

Key Publications

  • Abukhadra, Menna. (2013). Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in Jewish Heritage and Its Reflections in the Light of Modern Hebrew Poetry: Sarah and Hagar as a Test Case. Result Almashrek. Vol. 28. Centre of Oriental Studies. Cairo university.
  • Abukhadra, Menna. (2014). Jewish Religious Values in Modern Hebrew Poetry between Commitment and Deviation: Rebecca as a test case. Result Almashrek. Vol. 29. Centre of Oriental Studies. Cairo university.

Other Publications

a)    Presentations

  • The 33rd AIS Annual Conference at Brandeis University in Waltham, MA. June 12 – 14 2017.

Paper’s title “The Image of Women in Modern Hebrew Feminist Poetry: A Century of Evolution”

  • Middle East Studies, School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies University of Oxford “Israel Studies as a Global Discipline” 29 May, 2017. St. Anne’s College, Oxford.

Paper’s title “Israel Studies in Cairo University”

  • The Central Board of German Jews conference “Centenary of the Balfour Declaration. Zionism – From Vision to Implementation” March 29 – 31 2017, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Lecture’s title “Arabs’ perspective on the Zionist project”.

  • The 31st Annual Meeting of the Association for Israel Studies (AIS) “Sustainable Israel: A Changing Society in the 21st Century” 2nd June 2015. Concordia university, Qc, Canada.

Paper’s title “Israel Studies in Egyptian Universities Beginning, Development and problems: Cairo University as a test case”.

  • 3rd International Oriental Studies Center conference “Values in Religions” 21 February 2015. Cairo University. Egypt.

Paper’s title “Jewish Religious Values in Modern Hebrew Poetry between Commitment and Deviation: Rebecca as a test case”.

  • 21st International DAVO Congress of Contemporary Research on the Middle East. 25 – 27 September 2014. Cologne. Germany.

Paper’s title “Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Reflections in the Light of Modern Hebrew Poetry: Sarah and Hagar as a test case”.

b)    Conferences Organized

  • The Translation of the Holy Quran into Oriental Languages. Cairo University and Center of Oriental Studies 14 – 15 November 2006. Giza. Egypt.
  • The Image of Egypt in Oriental literature. 15 – 16 November 2005. Cairo University. Giza. Egypt.