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Personal profile

Personal information

I take pride in the fact that I begun my higher education in sociology/cultural anthroplogy and remained consistently within the discpline of social sciences while maintaining diverse interests. My research interests begin with the mundane affairs of everyday life and end up in most weird and lesser explored corners of existence. So be aware of the maddness before coming closer.

My work concentrates on questions of subjectivity, violence, materiality and print culture. However, I maintain an academic interest in sexuality, digital presence and gender studies. I explored the question of materiality of guns and bodies while studying militancy and militants in Lebanon. Currently, I am tracing the pleasures of violence and the convergence of the subjectivity of authors and readers within propaganda materials and state sanctioned memoirs.

My theoretical interests are influenced by post-structuralism, critical theory and storytelling. Therfeore, I designed and organize the Summer School in 'hands-on anthroplogy and storytelling'. You can find more information about it here https://handsonanthropology.org/ and Stories from Amsterdam.

I am currently a post-doctoral fellow in Université libre de Bruxelles at the center for interdisicplinary studies of religion and laicite. The project that I have started there is called 'God from bedrooms till streets in the Middle East (Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan).

Ancillary activities

No ancillary activities

Ancillary activities are updated daily


At the moment I teach (this year I am not part of the 2018 teaching program at the faculty of scoial sciences in VU)


  • Hands-on Anthropology and Ethnography (Summer School)
  • Middle East Today at Amsterdam University College
  • Sacred cityscape in VU faculty of theology

Prizes and Awards

  • Nomination for Teacher Talent Prize 2016-2017, FSW, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Nomination for Teacher Talent Prize 2017-2018, FSW, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Petrer Beahr Prize for Best Research proposal 2017
  • Einstein Junior Research Fellowship 2018-2019 (Einstein Foundation Berlin/ fellowship hosted in Humboldt University)
  • Vrije Universiteit Research Fellowship 2019-2020 (Ghorashi Fellow) 

Ancillary activities

Book Review Editor for Journal of Perpetarator Studies

Book Review Editor for Journal of Politics, Religion and Ideology

Education/Academic qualification

Sociology, PhD, Delhi School of Economics


  • H Social Sciences
  • conflict ethnography
  • cultural anthropology
  • Embodiment theory
  • memory studies
  • subjectivity and violence
  • sexuality
  • storytelling
  • Islam
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Afghanistan
  • Millitancy
  • radicalization
  • Political Violence
  • Material Culture

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

Iran Social Sciences
anthropology Social Sciences
political consciousness Social Sciences
Iraq Social Sciences
history Social Sciences
photography Social Sciences
weapon Social Sciences
contingency Social Sciences

Research Output 2015 2018

Chasing some bodies: Tracing the embodiment of female refugees in transnational settings and reading tales of their bodies

Saramifar, Y., May 2018, In : European Journal of Women's Studies. 25, 2, p. 183-197 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Crafting Sacrality from the tensile life of objects: learning about the material life of prayer beads from a Khaksari Sufi Murshid

Saramifar, Y., 2018, In : Contemporary Islam. 12, 1, p. 39–55

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
political consciousness

Enchanted by the AK-47: contingency of body and the weapon among Hezbollah militants

Saramifar, Y., 1 Mar 2018, In : Journal of Material Culture . 23, 1, p. 83-99 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Airplane Reading edited by Christopher Schaberg and Mark Yakich

Saramifar, Y., 2017, In : Transfer. 7, 1, p. 151-152

Research output: Contribution to JournalBook/Film/Article reviewProfessional



Peter Baehr Prize

Y. Saramifar (Recipient), 2017

Prize: Prize / AwardAcademic

Press / Media

'Om iets écht te doorgronden, moet je het ervaren'

Y. Saramifar


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Other