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Linda Sayed

Linda  Sayed
  • Assistant Professor
  • Faculty
  • Case Hall Room N354
  • 842 Chestnut Rd
  • East Lansing, MI 48825
  • 517-884-1285


Professor Sayed is an assistant professor of Comparative Cultures and Politics at James Madison College (JMC). She is a core faculty member of the Muslim Studies Program, and affiliate faculty of the Center of Gender in Global Context, and the Global Studies Program. Prior to arriving to JMC, Professor Sayed was at New York University, where she taught courses on Islam, gender, nationalism, colonialism, and Middle East history and politics. She holds a master’s degree in Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies from Columbia University.

Professor Sayed is an interdisciplinary scholar of the contemporary Middle East and the Arab diaspora. Her research focuses on the politics of citizenship as it relates to marginalized communities, refugee rights, health care accessibility, and systems of national and international governance that inform global public health concerns in the Middle East and among Arab communities in the United States. Her current research focuses on Syrian refugee’s rights to health services and the political infrastructures that determine accessibility to those services in the context of Lebanon. This research assesses the ways in which Syrians negotiate health and social services, and the complexities that exist in both the structures of international aid, and the political infrastructure of Lebanon that limit the services Syrian refugees have access to.

Professor Sayed is also involved in two separate research projects examining the impact of COVID-19 on marginalized groups in the U.S. One of those projects supported by MCCFAD investigates the psychosocial impact of the pandemic on aging Middle Eastern/Arab American immigrants and/or refugees in Michigan based on qualitative research conducted at local Arab organizations and institutions. Her previous research explored the role marginalized religious groups played in the construction of the nation-state and the politicization of sectarian identity as it concerned the Shi'a of Lebanon during the French Mandate period. This research studied the power of sectarianism in shaping everyday experiences and politics for Lebanese Shi’a.


“Caregiving for Foreign-Born Older Adults with Dementia,” Journal of Gerontology (November 2022);

“Negotiating Citizenship: Shi‘i Families and the Ja‘fari Shari‘a Courts in Lebanon” in Practicing Sectarianism in Lebanon: Archival and Ethnographic Interventions (November 2022).