Shifra Kisch

Shifra Kisch is an anthropologist and research fellow at the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR), she obtained her PhD from the University of Amsterdam (UvA). Her work is based on ethnographic fieldwork spanning over two decades among the Naqab Bedouin (the native Arab inhabitants of the southern arid region of present-day Israel). Her previous work on deafness and signing among the Negev Bedouin, and Jewish-Arab encounters has been published in various academic journals.

Her work in this project concerns unconventional marriages among the Naqab Bedouin such as multiple-mixed marriages and Deaf-Deaf marriages. The study of multiple-mixed marriages corresponds to her wider investigations into the lives of young educated Bedouin men and women and her research interests in the emerging new classes of professionals, the intersection of education and marriage, and the social history and impact of Palestinian student migration.



Kisch, Shifra, Annelies Moors and Rahma Bavelaar. ‘The intimate politics of publicly staging ‘mixed couples’’, submitted to the European Journal of Cultural Studies.

Kisch, Shifra, under review, ‘Conversion as a gift: Palestinian Bedouin grooms and Romanian brides’, submitted to Ethnos: Journal of AnthropologyPre-final version.

Kisch, Shifra, 2018, ‘Marriage conversions: Shari’a courts, Romanian brides and Palestinian Bedouin in-laws’, Journal of Mediterranean Studies 27, 2: 149-158. Pre-final version.



Kisch, Shifra. Reflections on mixed marriages amongst Palestinian Bedouin in the Naqab, Musmar Conference ‘Politics and/of Muslim Marriages’. University of Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2-3 July 2019.

Kisch, Shifra. Staging ‘mixed couples’: Preaching tolerance, marking difference, Workshop ‘Ethnography, Religion and Traveling Critique between Europe and MENA’. Nederlands-Vlaams Instituut, Cairo, Egypt, 15-16 March 2019.

Kisch, Shifra. Upward mobility between geopolitical peripheries: Palestinian students in Eastern Europe, Amsterdam Centre for Middle Eastern Studies(ACMES) Research Convention ‘Multiple Encounters: Europe in the Middle East / the Middle East in Europe’. Amsterdam, Netherlands, 17 December 2018.

Kisch, Shifra. Upward mobility between geopolitical peripheries: Palestinian students in Eastern Europe, Conference ‘Leaving Europe: Alternative Routes of Out/Upward Mobility’. KU Leuven, Belgium, 13-14 September 2018.

Kisch, Shifra, Rahma Bavelaar and Annelies Moors. The affective politics of publicly staging ‘mixed couples’, Annual EASA Conference. Stockholm, Sweden, 14-17 August 2018.

Kisch, Shifra. Where is religion in marriage conversion? Juridical policy of sharia court in Israel and the case of Rumanian brides & Palestinian Bedouin grooms, Conference ‘Religious Marriages in the Mediterranean’. Mediterranean Institute, University of Malta, 20-21 March 2018.

Kisch, Shifra. Mobility on the Margins: Palestinian students in Eastern-Europe, Conference ‘Critical Transnational Perspectives: Flows and Networks in and beyond the Middle East and North Africa’. Doha Institute for Graduate Studies, Qatar, December 2017.

Kisch, Shifra, Rahma Bavelaar and Annelies Moors. Visuality and the politics of publicly staging ‘mixed couples’, LUCIS Annual Conference ‘Islamic Visualities and In/Visibilities: Reimagining Public Citizenship’, Leiden University, Netherlands, 13-15 December 2017.

Kisch, Shifra. Changing markers of mixed marriages, International Conference ‘Power, Intimacy and the State: Mixed Families in Europe and Beyond’. University of Amsterdam, 12-13 June 2017.

Kisch, Shifra. Conversion as a Gift: Bedouin Grooms and Rumenian Brides, International Conference Interfaith Love: Love, Sex and Marriage in the Islamicate World. Leiden University, 22 June 2016.

Kisch, Shifra. When subalterns become professionals, Workshop ‘Comparative Settler-Colonialism’. Columbia University, NY, USA, 10 April 2015.

Kisch, Shifra. Marriage and language: Signing communities among the Naqab Bedouin. Bar Ilan University, Tel Aviv, Israel, 23 March 2015.

Kisch, Shifra. New marriage preferences among deaf Bedouin women, Gender studies department seminar. Ben-Gurion University, Beersheva, Israel, 10 March 2015.

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