Finding God Between Water and Clay: Contemporary Sufi Women Re-Imagine the Self, Teaching, and Community.

My dissertaiton explores Sufism through two living women Sufi teachers (shaykhas), Fariha al-Jerrahi of New York and Fawzia al-Rawi of Vienna. I examine how they navigate the Islamic tradition while developing transformative approaches to Sufi theology and training. This research analyzes how contemporary Sufi women redefine key terminology from Classical Sufi discourse to reflect their commitments to affirming pedagogy, embodied practices, and gender equality. This project is grounded in textual analysis, ethnographic research including participant observation and interviews, and critical engagement with the digital mediums in which these two women share their teachings to broad publics.