Faiz Ahmed named inaugural Faculty Fellow of Middle East Studies, a two-year appointment.
How did you first get interested in your field of study?
That is a long story! The University did an interview with me in Fall 2013 shortly after my hire at Brown, which partially addresses this question. The short version: I went to law school because, like many young law students, I sought to make the world a better place through law. After a pivotal experience working for a non-profit legal defense agency in Kabul, I ended up asking more questions, and not only about other places. Where do terms like the rule of law, constitutionalism, legal history, and even law itself come from? How are they deployed by various actors? And what might they mean–are there locally-driven “equivalents”?–to different societies and juridical traditions at different periods in time? You could say I am still idealistic, but I have since tried to be so in a more historically-informed, self-aware, and thoughtful kind of way.
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