Nelly van Doorn-Harder

Teaches Religion at Wake Forest University

Nelly van Doorn-Harder teaches religion at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC and is the lead organizer of the Desert Lights Collective. Desert Lights Collective ( seeks to create, collect, and post academically supported content that contextualizes violence and conflict connected to religion, especially Islam and Christianity, in the modern Middle East. Nelly has lived and worked in Egypt where she continues to do research on the Coptic Christian community. One of her latest books on the topic is: "Copts in Context: Negotiating Tradition, Transition and Modernity." (almost in print 2017). She has taught several years at various universities in Indonesia and continues to be involved in research projects on women and religion as well as interfaith encounters, especially on the island of Java. Blogs about her latest project in Indonesia can be found on the Contending Modernities platform: Her book "Women Shaping Islam. Indonesian Muslim Women Reading the Qur’an" (2006) continues to be used in college courses on gender and Islam.