Diya Abdo

Departments and Positions:
English, Chair, Associate Professor of English
School Extension 316.2214
Web Page:
Yarmouk University, BA, '96
Drew University, MA, '98
Drew University, PHD, '05

Current Projects/Research Interests

Diya is currently working on a book, Arab Women Writers:  Creative Negotiations of Contested Spaces. Her research interests include Arab women writers and Arab and Islamic feminisms.

Notable Work - Scholarly Articles

  • “Don't Claim to ‘Speak for’ Algerian Women: Reading Djebar across Disciplinary Borders?” (Co-author with Maria Bobroff.  Approaches to Teaching the Works of Assia Djebar, MLA) 
  • “My Qarina, My Self: The Homoerotic as Islamic Feminism in Alifa Rifaat’s ‘My World of the Unknown’” (The Journal of Lesbian Studies: Lesbians, Sexuality and Islam) 
  • “Chameleonic Text: Peritextual Transformation in Fatima Mernissi’s Dreams of Trespass and Nisa' 'Ala Ajnihat Al-hilm” (Life Writing
  • "Textual Migration: Self-Translation and Translation of the Self in Leila Abouzeid’s Return to Childhood: The Memoir of a Modern Moroccan Woman and Ruju ‘Ila Tufula" (Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies
  • “How to be a Successful Double Agent: Displacement as Strategy in Fadia Faqir’s Pillars of Salt” (Arab Voices in Diaspora: Critical Perspectives on Anglophone Arab Literature
  • “Redefining the Warring Self in Hanan Al-Shaykh’s The Story of Zahra and Frank McGuinness Carthaginians” (Pacific Coast Philology)
  • “Sacred Frontiers: Looking for Fissures to Construct an Alternate Feminist Subjectivity” (Womanhood in Anglophone Literary Culture: Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Perspectives)
  • “Narrating Little Fatima: A Picture is Worth 1001 Tales: ‘Multiple Critique’ in Fatima Mernissi’s Dreams of Trespass: Tales of a Harem Girlhood” (Image and Narrative)
  • “Uncovering the Harem in the Classroom: Tania Kamal Eldin’s Covered: The Hejab in Cairo, Egypt and Hollywood Harems within the context of a course on Arab women writers” (Women’s Studies Quarterly)
  • The Emperor Jones: A Struggle for Individuality” (Eugene O’Neill Review

Notable Work - Fiction and Poetry

  • “The Love Hoard” (short story) J Journal (nominated for a Pushcart Prize)
  • "Lariope" (poem) Storm Cellar

Notable Work - Creative Nonfiction

  • “Sayf” (27 Views of Greensboro, Eno Publishers)
  • "Bad Girl" (Winner of the Honorable Mention Award for Creative Nonfiction in the Center for Women Writers 2015 International Literary Awards competition)
  • “Bad Girl of Jordanian Academia: A Personal Journey” (Bad Girls of the Arab World)

Notable Work - Public Essays

  • “The Limits of Speaking on Catastrophe: Confessions of a Palestinian Teacher” (The Feminist Wire)
  • “The Most Valuable Lesson from Steven Salaita’s Visit to Guilford College” (The Electronic Intifada)
  • "The Art of Posing" (Jadaliyya)
  • "Reimagining the University in a Time of Crisis" (Jadaliyya)

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Literary Studies
  • Survey of American Literature II
  • World Literature
  • African Women Writers
  • Postcolonial Literature
  • Arab Women Writers
  • Arab And Islamic Feminisms

Campus and Community Involvement

College Awards

  • Board of Visitors Award for Excellence in Academic Advising
  • Bruce B. Stewart Award for Teaching Excellence
  • Dick Dyer Award for Outstanding Academic and Personal Advising