Liliya Karimova recently received her Ph.D. in Communication from UMASS-Amherst. She is currently an independent researcher and a Professorial Lecturer in the Department of Organizational Sciences and Communication at the George Washington University, Washington, DC. She has published in Nova Religio: the Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions; The Journal of Intercultural Communication Research; Central Asian Survey; Central Asian Affairs, Anthropology and Archaeology of Eurasia. Her research focuses on women, identity, piety, Islam, space, and discourse in Tatarstan, Russia.

Project Summary

This book project uses Tatar women’s stories about their paths to Islam as a window into Tatars’ Muslim revival, their diverse understandings of religion, and personal and social implications of Muslim piety in Russia today. The original ethnographic manuscript provides an intimate view of the Muslim revival at the individual level, explaining the importance of religion as a source of personal and social transformation. The focus on women—informal yet often primary advocates of Islam in Tatarstan—offers a unique outlook on the women’s experiences and perspectives, which are not represented by Muslim or government officials and unknown to the policy-making community.

Major Publications

Karimova, Liliya. "Muslim Revival in Tatarstan." Nova Religio: The Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions 17, no. 1 (2013): 38-58.
Karimova, Liliya. "“Piety Stories”: Muslim Tatar Women’s Identity Performance, Negotiation, and Transformation through Storytelling." Journal of Intercultural Communication Research 43, no. 4 (2014): 327-345.
(Re)constructing Muslim Identities from the Soviet Past: Muslim Tatar Women’s Stories of Soviet Moral Selves. Central Asian Affairs. (accepted for publication, forthcoming 2016).