I am currently a Visiting Assistant Professor in the American Studies Program at Williams College and a Project Policy Analyst with the Global Justice program at the Othering & Belonging Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. I hold a Ph.D. in "Society and Environment" (American Studies, Ethnic Studies, Geography) from the University of California, Berkeley.
As for how I got here, I was born and raised on Tongva territory, in Los Angeles, California. As a second generation Iranian-American, it was there that my love of family, community, and the outdoors were cultivated. Yet, a former Mexican land grant at the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, it was also a part of Los Angeles that has long been emblematic of a range of technologies of racial capitalist and white nationalist violence and exploitation—from U.S. territorial expansion, to Japanese internment, to biker gangs and neo-Nazis, more recently.
It was at this particular confluence of histories of community and conflict that I began to reckon with the institutional and interpersonal complexities of place, including the ground beneath my feet. From my previous work as a researcher with the National Park Service, just outside of Los Angeles, to my current work as a leftist educator based in Boston on Mashpee Wampanoag territory, critical research, teaching, and advocacy have been an important part of my commitment to Indigenous sovereignty, Black reparations, and anti-racist and anti-imperial movements.