Dima Ayoub

CV Starr Fellow in Int'l Studies / Asst Prof of Arabic

 work(802) 443-5653
 SPRING 2022: Mondays 2:45-3:45PM and Tuesdays 4:30-6:30PM and or by appt. via Zoom.
 Voter Hall 008

Dima Ayoub, Ph.D. (McGill University) is an Assistant Professor of Arabic and C.V. Starr Junior Faculty Fellow in International Studies and the former director of the Middle East studies program. Her book manuscript Paratext and Power: Modern Arabic Literature in Translation rewrites the social and cultural history of modern Arabic literature in translation by centering the role of paratexts in addition to publishers, translators, and writers.

Dr. Ayoub’s work connects the fields of Digital Humanities with studies of Arabic and comparative literature – she has developed a digital archive of modern Arabic literature in English, French, German and Spanish translation. To learn more about the project go here. To learn more about Dr. Ayoub’s work with Middlebury students go here. In 2020-2021, she was a Digital Liberal Arts Faculty Fellow.

Areas of teaching/expertise: modern Arabic literature; Critical translation theory; Digital Humanities; Anglo-Arab literature; Arab-American literature; Arab cinema; Empire and postcolonial Studies; Postmodern literature; Gender studies, Arab feminism(s); Arab masculinities; Queer Arabic literature; Literatures of migration and diaspora; Arab-Jewish literature and culture. 

Recent Publications:

2021    “Multilingual Others: Transliteration as Resistant Translation.” Multilingual Literature as World Literature. Edited by Wen-Chin Ouyang and Jane Hiddleston. London: Bloomsbury, 2021.

2020    Ayoub, Dima. “Politics of Paratextuality: The Glossary Between Translation and the Translational.” Journal of Arabic Literature. 51.1 (2020): 27-52.

2019    Ayoub, Dima. “Diasporic Slippages: Accent and Dialect in Translation.” Journal of Middle Eastern Literatures. 22.1 (2019): 23-35.

2019    Ayoub, Dima. “The (Un)Translatability of Translational Literature: Ahdaf Soueif’s The Map of Love between English and Arabic.” Translation Studies. 12.3 (2019): 308-320.

Recent Public & Invited Talks:

NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery Navigating Digital Identities, Translation, Bodies, and Paratexts [A conversation with Lee Blalock and Dima Ayoub] Duke University, Middle East Studies Center “What Can the Digital Humanities Learn from Arabic Literature in Translation?”

University of Maryland Baltimore County, Gender Women’s, + Sexuality Studies “Exploring Gender Ambiguity & Non-Conformity in Arabic.”

Hamad Bin Khalifa University, 11th International Translation Conference. Keynote address “Towards a Just Translation: COVID 19 and Current Changes in Translation and Interpreting Studies”

Association of Adaptation Studies Conference, Queen Margaret University Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland.  Keynote address: “Strangers in our Midst: The Paratextual Labor of Arabic Literature in Translation”

Select Papers and Presentations:

“Talking Gender: Fluidity, Pronouns, and the Arabic Language. Community Conversation. Lebanese American University New York City Head Quarters. New York City, NY. February 2020.

 “Transliterating Right-to-Left Languages.” NYU Abu Dhabi Winter Institute in Digital Humanities, New York University, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. January 2020.

 “Transliteration as Resistant Translation.” Abdelkébir Khatibi: Literature & Theory conference, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH. November 2019.

“Lebanon Protests.” Public conversation with Tarek El Ariss and Paul Salem. Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH. November 2019.

 “Paratext and Power in Arabic Literary Translation.” Forum Transregionale Studien, Europe in the Middle East—The Middle East in Europe (EUME), Berlin, Germany. July 2019.

“Glossary in Translation.” Seventeenth International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities. University of Granada, Granada, Spain. July 2019.

“Glossing the Glossary: Digital Approaches to Paratexts and Power in Arabic Literature.” The Cultural Turn in Arabic Literary Production, Conference in Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Journal of Arabic Literature, Columbia University, New York. April 2019.

“Digitizing Paratexts in Translation: Between Distant and Close Readings.” Histoire, langues et textométrie Colloque, Université Paris, Sorbonne, Paris. January 2019.

“Itinerant Paratexts in Translation.” Keynote lecture at Islamic Studies Within a Global Context Conference, Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University, Montréal. April 2018.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

ARBC 0102 - Beginning Arabic II      

Beginning Arabic II
This course is an intensive continuation of ARBC 0101. In addition to the goals stated for that course there will be extra emphasis on cultural skills during winter term. (ARBC 0101 or equivalent). LNG WTR

Winter 2020, Winter 2022, Winter 2023

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ARBC 0103 - Beginning Arabic III      

Beginning Arabic III
This course is a continuation of ARBC 0102. 6 hrs. lect/disc (ARBC 0102 or equivalent) LNG

Spring 2020

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ARBC 0201 - Intermediate Arabic I      

Intermediate Arabic I
This course is a continuation of ARBC 0103. Emphasis is placed on reading authentic materials from Arabic media, expanding students' vocabulary, listening to and watching audio and video materials, and developing students' understanding of Arab culture and communicative competence. (ARBC 0103 or equivalent) 6 hrs. lect/disc LNG

Fall 2018, Fall 2021, Fall 2022

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ARBC 0202 - Intermediate Arabic II      

Intermediate Arabic II
This course is a continuation of Arabic 0201. Fifth in a series of courses that develop reading, speaking, listening, writing, and cultural skills in Arabic. This course stresses communication in formal and spoken Arabic. (ARBC 0201 or equivalent). 6 hrs. lect/disc LNG

Spring 2019, Spring 2022

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ARBC 0235 / GSFS 0235 - Gender Politics in Arab World      

Gender Politics of the Arab World
The aim of this course is to explore the ways in which the social and cultural construction of sexual difference shapes the politics of gender and sexuality in the Middle East and North Africa. Using interdisciplinary feminist theories, we will explore key issues and debates including the interaction of religion and sexuality, women’s movements, gender-based violence, queerness and gay/straight identities. Looking at the ways in which the Arab Spring galvanized what some have called a “gender revolution,” we will examine women’s roles in the various revolutions across the Arab World, and explore the varied and shifting gender dynamics in the region. Taught in English (formerly ARBC/GSFS 0328) 3 hrs. Sem. (National/Transnational Feminisms) AAL CMP CW MDE SOC

Fall 2019

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ARBC 0241 / BLST 0241 - Blackness & the Arab Imaginary      

Blackness and the Arab Imaginary (In English)
Blackness as a category of analysis in the Middle East and North Africa, while fundamental to opening the field to the study of race and the legacies of slavery, remains understudied and deserving of critical attention. In this course we will explore the historic and political category of “blackness” and examine how black identities are constructed in the cultural and epistemological production of the Arab world and the Arab Diaspora through literature, critical scholarship, music, and cinema. We will address imperial and transnational dimensions of blackness as well as its increasing relevance for understanding new racial configurations in the contemporary Middle East and the Arab Diaspora. 3 hrs. lect.*This course is part of the Public Humanities Labs Initiative administered by the Axinn Center for the Humanities.* MDE SOC

Fall 2021

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ARBC 0301 - Advanced Arabic I      

Advanced Arabic 1
A continuation of Arabic 0202. This course aims to help students reach an intermediate-high level of proficiency in reading, speaking, writing, listening, and culture. Readings include articles on cultural, social, historical, political and literary topics. (ARBC 0202 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect/disc LNG

Fall 2022

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ARBC 0335 / GSFS 0335 - Gndr&Migr: Modrn Arb Lit & Cin      

Gender and Migration in Modern Arabic Literature and Cinema
The study of migration and gender as intersecting areas of inquiry offers multiple possibilities for exploring modern Arabic literature and cinema. The modern Arab world is shaped by steady flows of migration and displacement, heavily influencing the literary and visual expression of the twentieth and twenty-first century. In this course we will attend to the formation of “gender” as a category of study, while also paying attention to class and religion as these center on and inform migration flows and displacement in the modern Arab world. We will study a number of novels and films that focus on the ways in which the “modern” in the Arab world is shaped and produced by migrations flows, displacement, and diasporas.(National/Transnational Feminisms) 3 hrs. lect. AAL LIT MDE

Fall 2018

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ARBC 0412 - Contemporary Arab Cinema      

Contemporary Arab Cinema
This course will present an overview of contemporary Arab cinema, exploring the way in which this cinema reflects the dynamics of political, economic, and social change in modern Arab societies. The course will be conducted exclusively in Arabic and will involve reading texts that present an overview of contemporary Arab cinema as well as texts analyzing notable and award-winning Arabic films. (ARBC 0302 or equivalent) 3 hrs. sem. AAL ART LNG MDE

Spring 2020

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ARBC 0420 - Sex,Love,Desire in Arab Pop Cu      

Sex, Love, and Desire in Arab Popular Culture
In this course we will challenge Western judgments about Arab sexuality and desire as inherently repressive. We will survey the permutations of desire -- from the sexual to the sacred, the heteroerotic to the homoerotic—in popular Arab culture. We will consider the intersections of gender, nation, race, ethnicity, ability, and sexuality in cinema, literature, and music. Through these mediums, we will examine the changing definitions of sexual respectability and sex work in different contexts, transsexuality and transgender identities, marriage, sexual revolutions and gender conflict, state regulation of sexuality, love for nation, and love in exile. This course will be taught entirely in Arabic. (ARBC 0302 or equivalent) 3 hrs. sem. AAL, ART, CMP, LNG, MDE AAL ART CMP LNG MDE

Spring 2022

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ARBC 0500 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
(Approval Required)

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023

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ARBC 0700 - Senior Thesis I      

Senior Thesis I
Approval required.

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023

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ARBC 0701 - Senior Thesis II      

Senior Thesis II
Approval required.

Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023

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CMLT 0700 - Senior Thesis      

Senior Thesis
A senior thesis is normally completed over two semesters. During Fall and Winter terms, or Winter and Spring terms, students will write a 35-page (article length) comparative essay, firmly situated in literary analysis. Students are responsible for identifying and arranging to work with their primary language and secondary language readers, and consulting with the program director before completing the CMLT Thesis Declaration form. (Approval required.)

Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Winter 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023

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Program in Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies

Chellis House Women's Resource Center
56 Hillcrest Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753