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Personal profile

Research interests

My research looks at the legal constructions of racialised and gendered identities and how these identities are negotiated by those who are subject(ed) to their force. My current investigation explores multi-handed prosecutions of Child Sexual Exploitation and focuses on the experiences of migrant defendants and their family members. This is an ethnography originally funded by the Journal for Law and Society.

My monograph, Marriage, Gender and Refugee Migration (Rutgers University Press, 2021) explores marriage and marital relations among Bristol-Somali migrants. Based on eighteen months of ethnographic fieldwork as well as interview data, the book provides empirical evidence on intimacy, gender roles and family life following refugee migration. My work specialises in conversation and narrative analysis, and the book develops the use of ethnopoetics as a tool by which the reflexive sociologist can interrogate the production of narratives in interactional settings. You can listen to me talk about the book and the methodology with Professor Bridget Anderson here.

I have a long-standing research interest in asylum and immigration law and its application. I am accredited with the Law Society as a Senior Immigration Caseworker and have over ten years of experience as a practitioner. I have published on topics including: the ongoing effects of colonialism in the UK border regime and the application of the Refugee Convention; the role of legal representatives in cultural translation and the drafting of witness statements for immigration appeals; and the gendered and ethnicised imagining of ‘Britishness’ in the regulation of marriage-related migration to the UK. I am a member of the Specialist Research Institute, Migration Mobilities Bristol, where I currently hold the role of Research Challenge Coordinator for Control, Conflict and Resistance. I am also a trustee of Bristol Refugee Rights. 

A further research interest lies with innovative methodologies including use of emerging technologies, and with spousal and familial care and communication in situations of long-term physical separation.

My PhD, supervised by Esther Dermott and Katharine Charsley, was awarded unconditionally from the University of Bristol in 2017, and received the Hilary Hartley prize for the best thesis of the year in the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies. I join SPS following two years as a post-doctoral researcher in the School of Law and Politics at Cardiff University.

External positions

Trustee, Bristol Refugee Rights

31 Oct 2031 → …

Structured keywords and research groupings

  • Migration Mobilities Bristol
  • SPS Children and Families Research Centre
  • Gender Research Group
  • SPAIS Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship


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