Dena Al-Adeeb is a Ph.D. candidate in the Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies Department, Culture and Representation track with a focus in Arts Politics at New York University. Dena is also an Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Media, Culture and Communication at NYU and a Visiting Instructor at the Pratt School of Architecture and Humanities and Media Studies Department at the Pratt Institute.
Dena’s research is related to the United States’ military occupation of ancient Iraqi heritage sites and destruction of cultural institutions, such as museums, libraries, and universities. She specifically takes on the case of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq but also makes references to other comparative situations, such as Palestine/Israel, within the larger discourse of cultural destruction and iconoclasm. Her research is situated within representational practices of empire building projects, which are linked to colonial legacies, geopolitical control of the region, international economic trade relations as well as contemporary entrepreneurial institutions, such as the museum. Her work also tackles the construction of the cultural districts in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates and Doha, Qatar in light of Orientalism and how contemporary art production, global consumer economy and the circulation of cultural meaning is being presented and contested. Her scholarship considers intersectional dynamics that revolve around politics of representation, visual culture, memory, violence and power, as well setting these geographies as a spectacle.
Her research takes on a transdisciplinary approach, which provides insight into processes of decolonization through remapping theoretically and visually discursive narratives of representation and subjectivities. She also examines key methodological and theoretical concerns in the visual culture of the West Asia and North Africa regions by examining decolonial architecture and aesthetic practices.
Research Interests: Postcolonial Studies, Visual Culture, Media/Cultural Studies, Contemporary Art, Architecture, Archeology and Cultural Heritage, Women and Gender Studies, Memory and Trauma Studies, Performance Studies, Ethnic Studies, Transnationalism, Diaspora and Displacement, Mourning and Remembrance, Imperialism, Urban Politics, War Studies; Iraq War, ‘Ashura, Sacred Spaces, Death and Dying Rituals.