Category Archives: Scholars

Visiting Graduate Student Fellow: Deniz Ilhan

Deniz Ilhan is a visiting graduate student fellow at Center for Democracy, Toleration and Religion at University of California, Berkeley.


Deniz Ilhan is a Ph.D. candidate at the Stony Brook University, Department of Sociology in New York, and is currently working on his dissertation thesis titled “Making Space in the Conversation: Muslims in Turkey’s Intellectual Field since 1980.”

Drawing on archival research, his study comparatively examines the interactions, content productions, curricular and research operations of select intellectual magazines, academic journals, educational think-tanks, and universities in Turkey since 1980, which are founded and led predominantly by Muslims. The analysis seeks to explain how these Muslim platforms strive to increase their institutional presence and influence over the agenda in Turkey, and what factors distinguish the successful. The study builds upon the sociology of intellectuals, knowledge and ideas, and the multi-disciplinary area studies on the Muslim intellectual space in general, and Turkish in particular.

Since September 2016, Deniz has been co-facilitating the weekly Middle East and North Africa Salons held at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at UC Berkeley, where recent developments or chronic issues of the region are discussed based on pre-assigned readings. Deniz has a Master’s degree from the Ataturk Institute for Modern Turkish History at Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey in which studied the multinational corporation professionals and cosmopolitanization in a globalizing city context: Istanbul, based on in-depth interviews.



Visiting Scholar: Matthias Haeussler, PhD

Matthias Haeussler, PhD is a visiting scholar at Center for Democracy, Toleration and Religion at University of California, Berkeley from October, 2017 through January, 2018.

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Matthias Haeussler studied Philosophy, Sociology and Political Sciences at Goethe University Frankfurt, where in 2006, he earned his PhD in Philosophy with a thesis on
Hegel’s Conception of Religion („Der Religionsbegriff in Hegels Phänomenologie des
Geistes“, 2 nd edition, Freiburg: Alber). In 2004 he became a faculty member of the
Department of Sociology of the University of Siegen. Between 2004 and 2009 he
conducted a research project funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) on
colonial rule, war and genocide in “German South West Africa“ (1904-1908), leading
him to extended stays in Namibia, Botswana and South Africa. He recently
completed a book on the Herero Genocide.
In 2014, Matthias was Visiting Scholar at the Hamburg Institute of Social Research,
since 2015 he has been a researcher at the Hamburg Foundation for the
Advancement of Science and Culture, working on a project titled “On Imperial
Domination. An Inquiry into Non-State Political Orders in Colonial Libya and
Namibia”. In addition to his research, he is editor of “Sociology of Violence” at
“Soziopolis”, (HIS/ Mittelweg 36) as well as on the advisory board of the “Journal of
Namibian Studies”.