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Noah Salomon

Irfan and Noreen Galaria Research Chair and Associate Professor in Islamic Studies, Department of Religious Studies

Research Interests

Noah Salomon (PhD University of Chicago) is the Irfan and Noreen Galaria Research Chair and Associate Professor in Islamic Studies in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia. He also holds a courtesy appointment in the Department of Anthropology. Salomon’s research broadly concerns the intertwining of religious criticism, political aesthetics, and Islamic practice, with a focus on contemporary Africa and the Middle East.  His first book, For Love of the Prophet: An Ethnography of Sudan’s Islamic State (Princeton University Press 2016, précis) is a study of the development of, and eventual crises in, new forms of political community that arose in Sudan during its “national salvation” period in the first two decades of the 21st century. It won the 2017 Albert Hourani Prize from the Middle East Studies Association and an Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion (analytic/descriptive studies) from the American Academy of Religion.  Subsequent research has focused on the establishment of state secularism in the new nation of South Sudan, as a mode of unraveling the Islamic State, and the concomitant construction of a Muslim minority as part of a nascent project of nation-building. More recently, Salomon has been writing on the phenomenological and practical interlacing of religion and revolution, with a particular focus on the popular uprisings of 2019-2020

From 2018 to 2023, Salomon is an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation New Directions Fellow working between Beirut, Muscat, and Khartoum on a book project that explores Islamic modes of performing, managing, and negotiating Muslim difference, particularly at inflection points of social and political change. Prior to coming to the University of Virginia, Salomon spent ten years at Carleton College, where he was Associate Professor of Religion and Director of Middle East Studies (2016-2019). He was a member of the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton, NJ) in the School of Social Science for the 2013-14 academic year.