Maria Cardeira da Silva
Maria Cardeira da Silva, Professor at Universidade Nova de Lisboa, is an anthropologist interested in Arabic and Islamic contexts, Islam and gender, and in the Anthropology of Tourism and Heritage. She has conducted ethnographic fieldwork in the medina of Salé, and later on in Portuguese historical sites like Mazagão and Azzamor (Morocco), Ouadane (Mauritania) and Mazagão (Amapá, Brasil), under the scope of several research projects on heritage, tourism and cultural cooperation. She is also interested in Islamophobia, national and European public policies regarding Islam, and Islamic heritage in Europe and it was in that frame that she integrated the research team of MERAP-MED PROJECT (Religious memories and heritage practices in the Mediterranean. Confessional coexistence and heritage assertion) and that she is now member of HERILIGION project, focusing on the ways that Portuguese State, Academy, and Muslim communities (Portuguese and Spanish) use Islamic heritage to assert and disseminate its religious and political identities and legitimacy. Within the TRANSRELEX (Transmission spirituelle et fabrication du patrimoine religieux en Méditerranée. Expériences individuelles). project that she also currently integrates, she follows the path of Jewish heritage in Morocco exploring a dialog between religious identity building in family and community contexts and fabrication of religious heritage in the Mediterranean. As a team member of the ERA Starting Grant CAPSAHARA (Critical Approaches to Politics, Social Activism, and Islamic militancy in the Western Saharan Region) she is also currently conducting fieldwork in Mauritania to explore the configurations of local configurations of women rights activisms and transnational feminisms.