Dora Carpenter-Latiri

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Scholarly biography and interests

A cultural researcher, writer and photographer, Dora Carpenter-Latiri's work examines the dialogue of cultures and communities on either side of the Mediterranean in France and North Africa, focussing on the way identities are built by those communities and how they are perceived from the outside. Her publications deal with language and intercultural issues, migration, representations of minorities in film and literary productions, memory and first person narratives.

She has a number of specific focusses: linguistically in investigating how French and Arabic are taught and used in Tunisia and North Africa and how these languages are used on websites, historically through the legacy of the Algerian wars, culturally in how North African identities are represented in French film and popular music, and socially in the complex issue of the Islamic headscarf and on discourses on sexualities on Tunisian women’s blogs.

Dr Carpenter-Latiri's wide-ranging expertise allows her to examine language and intercultural problems as well as migration, minorities and their representation in the cinema and literature. Using, as for example in her article Visites de la synagogue de La Goulette, visual anthropology methods to describe and analyse rituals in a synagogue in La Goulette, Tunisia.

Her publications have developed from broader research on identity, gender, migration, culture and representations in discourse and in the arts, with extensive work on the Jews of Tunisia, a small surviving Jewish minority in the Arab world. Dora Carpenter-Latiri publishes also on Arab cinema with work on Benguigui, Kechiche, regular contributions to debates about contemporary Arab films, and a photographic essay, The sacrificial sheep in French North African migration cinema: displacements and reappropriations in a special issue on North African Cinema for Journal of African Cinemas.

As a photographer, Dr Carpenter-Latiri held her first solo exhibition, La Goulette plurielle in Tunis, between December 2012 and January 2013. Her photographic work 'Torsion, 2013' is now part of the Luciano Benetton's Imago Mundi collection and was part of the 'Turbulence' exhibition shown in Rome in November and December 2014 and the Venice Biennale in 2015. Her post-Tunisian revolution travel narrative Un amour de tn - Carnet photographique d'un retour au pays natal, was published by Elyzad in December 2012.

Dr Dora Carpenter-Latiri was born in Tunisia and has lived and studied in Paris. She has a wide knowledge of the Arab world, with periods in Sudan, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia. She came to academia after a first career in educational publishing and lexicography, working with Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and Le Robert. She began teaching at the University of Tunis in 1994 and moved to the University of Brighton in 1997, where her experience in North Africa led her to research in the interface between France and the Maghreb.





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