Dr. Sinem Adar

Einstein Fellow

Dr. Sinem Adar has received her PhD degree (2014) in Sociology from Brown University and MSc degree (2005) in Development Studies from the London School of Economics. Sinem Adar's research examines struggles over the parameters of inclusion into and exclusion from the political community, and how these struggles shape and are shaped by identification processes. In her dissertation research, she has analyzed the emigration of non-Muslims from the once religiously heterogenous cities of Istanbul and Alexandria while religion has become a crucial category in defining the symbolic boundaries of the national community in Turkey and Egypt. Her work based on this research has so far appeared at the Political Power and Social Theory, Sociological Forum, and edited book volumes. Based on her research and general interest in Turkey and the Middle East, she also writes semi-academic pieces for the general public at outlets such as Jadaliyya, Al Jazeera, Open Democracy and ReSet Doc.

In her new project, Dr. Adar shifts her focus on boundaries, categories and identification processes to an immigration context. Last year, she conducted qualitative research in Berlin as an IPC-Mercator Fellow at the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik in order to understand how and to which ends migrants from Turkey and their Germany born children engage with Turkish politics that has increasingly turned authoritarian and conservative since the early 2010s. Sinem Adar's project during her stay at HU as an Einstein Fellow builds on the findings of this research. This project explores the material and emotional conditions of belonging as experienced by Turkish-origin inhabitants of/in Berlin by asking the following questions: What are the characteristics of the neighborhoods where Turkish-origin inhabitants in Berlin mostly live in? How have these neighborhoods demographically and spatially changed over time? What kind of interactions do take place at crucial places for socialization such as schools, mosques, and neighborhood associations? How do Turkish-origin inhabitants perceive their social standing vis-à-vis majority population, on the one hand, and vis-à-vis new migrants, on the other hand? What kind of emotional traces do these perceptions leave on Turkish-origin inhabitants?