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Dina Heshmat

  • Position: Associate Professor
  • Department: Department of Arab and Islamic Civilizations
  • Email: [email protected]
Brief Biography

Dina Heshmat joined the Department of Arab and Islamic Studies in 2013, where she teaches modern and contemporary Arabic literature. Her research focuses on the relationship between urban and historical contexts and literary and cinematic narratives. Before joining The American University in Cairo (AUC), she taught Arabic language and literature at Leiden University (2009 - 2013). She was a fellow of the Nantes Institute for Advanced Study in 2022-2023.

Research Interest
  • Literature and History
  • Literature and Urban Space
  • Literature and Cinema
  • Gender Studies


Articles and Book Chapters

  • “A Journey in the Archives in the Footsteps of Fikriyya Husni” (in Arabic), accepted for publication. Proceedings of the “Gendering the Arab Archive” workshop, organized in Beirut in May 2022 by the Arab Council for the Social Sciences and the Women and Memory Forum. 
  • Kamel Daoud: Documenting Algerian Reality between Literature and Journalism (in Arabic), Alif Journal of Comparative Poetics n°37, 2017, 96-117
  • Mahfouz’ Cairo and Pamuk’s Istanbul: Cities of Historic and Cultural Upheaval (in Arabic), Alif Journal of Comparative Poetics n°35, 2015, 68-83
  • Egyptian Narratives of the 2011 Revolution: Diary as a Medium of Reconciliation with the Political in Pannewick, Friederike and George Khalil, eds. Commitment and Beyond: Reflections on the Political in Arabic Literature since the 1940s. Wiesbaden: Reichert 2015, 63-75
  • Reshaping Urban Imaginary: Cairo Malls in Two Contemporary Egyptian Novels, Arabica, vol. 58, n°6, 2011, 545-560
  • Novels of Anger and Revolution (in Arabic), Jadaliyya, December 2011
  • De la Ville Vertige à la Mégapole Fragmentée, Lettre de l'OUCC n°6/7, 2005, 60-66
  •  Imbaba is an Open City: a Study of Ibrahim Aslan’s The Heron, Amkina n°3, 2001, 95-114


  • Encyclopedia of Islam, Three, Edited by: Kate Fleet, Gudrun Krämer, Denis Matringe, John Nawas, Everett Rowson. Leiden Boston: 2019. Ḥusayn, Muḥammad Kāmil, 61-63.
  • Didier, Antoinette Fouque and Mireille Calle-Gruber, eds. Le Dictionnaire universel des créatrices, Paris, Editions des Femmes, 2013. Entries about 18 Palestinian women writers and a general article: Femmes de lettres and National Palestinian Movement

Book Reviews

  •  Alexandrian Cosmopolitanism: An Archive, by Hala Halim. New York: Fordham UP. 2013 Canadian Review of Comparative Literature, Vol.43, n°2, December 2016, 571-573
  • Gender, Nation and the Arabic Novel, Egypt, 1892-2008, by Hoda Elsadda. New York: Syracuse University Press and Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2012, Comparative Literature Studies, Vol.51, n°2, 2014, 51-353
  • Shawq al-Darwish, by Hammur Ziyada: Beware Faith, My Son, for it Sometimes Might Be as Devastating as Impiety, (Arabic), Jadaliyya. Arab Studies Institute, 20 February 2015
  • 1919 by Ahmed Mourad: A Radical Attempt at Rewriting History That Fails to Translate the Revolution’s Spirit (Arabic), Jadaliyya. Arab Studies Institute, 18 June 2014
  • PhD in Modern Arabic literature, 2004, University of Paris III–Sorbonne Nouvelle, France
  • Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies, (DEA, present Master II) in Modern Arabic Literature, 1998, University of Paris IV–Sorbonne, France
  • Master's in Modern Arabic Literature, 1997, University of Paris IV–Sorbonne, France