My Research

My overarching research agenda is focused on answering a simple question with a complex answer: how do people transform their social, political, and cultural contexts? My answers focus on the intersections of culture, power, and history in social action. I am concerned with how the actions of human agents interact with the reproduction of social structures, and how the two of them play off each other in times of massive change and unrest, leading to both planned and unplanned change.

My attempts to answer this question have led me to study revolutions and social movements. I approach them through the lens of cultural and political sociology, and use comparative and historical methods to unearth the common logics and grammar of social transformation in turbulent times. In the process of research, I have also come to appreciate the role of globalization and the media – both traditional and social – in social change.

Current Projects:

Realizing Revolution: Nationalism, Freedom, and Utopia in Iran and Nicaragua, 1979-1999

The Discursive Construction of Revolution: Frame Dynamics in the 2011 Egyptian Revolution

Democracy through Revolution: Voice and Rights in the Revolutionary Process