Coptic Canadian History Project

Scholars Discuss Coptic Studies: Episode 1 (Part 1)

Michael Akladios (left), Essam Iskander (center), Candace Lukasik (right) standing before St. Mary of Zaitun church in the St. Mary Christian Center, Staten Island, NY

Welcome to the first episode of “Scholars Discuss Coptic Studies,” presented by the Coptic Canadian History Project (CCHP). This audio blog series aims to bring together junior and established scholars from across North America and to offer insight on the ongoing research involving Coptic populations around the world. Our host and facilitator for this episode is Essam Iskander, translator and interpreter for the Diocese of New York and New England. He is joined by Candace Lukasik (PhD candidate in Anthropology, UC Berkeley) and Michael Akladios (PhD candidate in History, York University).

We would like to thank the St. Mary’s Christian Center of Staten Island, the headquarters of the diocese of New York and New England under His Grace Bishop David, for hosting us and stress that the views and opinions expressed in this recording do not reflect those of the center, its staff, the diocese bishop, or the diocese.

Episode 1 of “Scholars discuss Coptic Studies” is divided into two parts, with the first part available today for your listening pleasure. In part 1, our guests first introduce themselves and their work, discuss their experiences in the field of Coptic Studies, the challenges of fieldwork, and the larger implications of the study of Coptic populations in Egypt and its diaspora on their disciplines. They then expand on our understanding of contemporary migration patterns, the experiences of diverse ethnic, religious, and socio-economic groups in Egyptian society, and the impact of the 1952 Free Officers revolution on emigration to North America.

We hope you enjoy the conversation and please stay tuned for part 2, available next Sunday, September 3rd. Next week our guests will discuss the place of homeland politics in the transnational experiences of Coptic immigrants to North America and attempt to tackle the question of Coptic identity.

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