Mohamed Yunus Rafiq will pursue a year-long research project in Tanzania, thanks to a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellowship. “I am grateful that I will be able to fully dedicate my time and efforts to my research on how Muslim religious figures mediate relations between the state and the citizens through public health programs in post-socialist Tanzania,” he says.
“Being a Fulbright-Hays Fellow gives me confidence that my research is valued by the scholarly community, especially considering the competitive grant environment,” he adds.
This DDRA program provides grants to colleges and universities to fund individual doctoral students who conduct research in other countries, in modern foreign languages and area studies for periods of six to 12 months. Projects are meant to deepen research knowledge on and help the nation develop capability in areas of the world not generally included in U.S. curricula, according to the U.S. Department of Education.
Rafiq’s project is called “Shaykhs and the State: The Incorporation of Tanzanian Shaykhs in Biopolitical Projects in Pre and Post-Ujamaa Era.” Through ethnographic research, he will examine the effects of state building projects on the consolidation of politicized religious identities. The third-year PhD candidate in Anthropology will spend nine months in a village and three months in Dar es Salaam, beginning in January 2014.