Leila Tarakji


FacultyReligious Studies

Assistant Professor
Islam; Islam in America; Muslim American Literature; Islamic Thought


Leila Tarakji is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Michigan State University. Her research and teaching focus on Islam and Muslim Studies, with a particular interest in the lives and experiences of Muslims in America. She is also a core faculty member in the Muslim Studies Program at MSU.

Leila received her doctoral degree from the Department of English at MSU. Her research in Muslim American literary studies explores how Muslim writers (re)imagine their plural identities through narrative and how they participate in the production of American literature and the U.S. cultural imaginary. Her work also considers how Muslim texts define Islam in America and engage with representations of their faith and community in U.S. media and culture. She is working on a manuscript that elaborates on how Muslim Americans articulate their “Muslimness” while situating themselves within the broader Umma or Muslim community.

Ph.D. English, Michigan State University (2021)
M.A. English Language & Literature, University of Michigan-Flint (2011)