New Faculty in MELC 2023-2024

Submitted by Rick Aguilar on

By Kathryn Medill


We are grateful for those who have joined our faculty this year, and excited for the expertise that they bring to the table.

Hunter Bandy, teaching a variety of courses in Arabic & Islamic Studies

I completed my PhD in Islamic studies at Duke and previously taught at North Carolina State, Elon, and the University of Oklahoma. Last year, I was a research fellow at the EPHE in Paris. At UW, I teach classical Arabic (ARAB 412), Arabic mystical and theological literature (ARAB 410), survey courses on the Qur’an (MELC 231), and more. In Spring 2024, look for MELC 229, “Introduction to Islamic Cultures and Thought,” and MELC 590, a seminar in Middle Eastern culture and thought focused on Islam in the Early Modern period.

I research the manuscript heritage of transnational Shiʿi and Sufi Muslim networks, linking sites in Iran and Arabia to South Asia, 1300-1700 CE. My book in preparation demonstrates how these networks fashioned imperial and sultanate courts into centers of scientific power by tracing the career of a Muslim naturalist whom I consider to be an agent of mobile sovereignty. Ultimately, my book unites my interests in the history of science, political theology, and diaspora studies while contributing to a growing literature seeking to eliminate blinkered divisions between Middle Eastern and Indian Ocean Islam.

Mindy Cohoon, teaching MELC 485, “Digital Media: Middle East and Central Eurasia” (Spring 2024)