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Nelly van Doorn-Harder


Nelly van Doorn-Harder is a scholar of religion. Presently, she is a professor at Wake Forest University (North Carolina, USA) and the Vrije Universiteit (Amsterdam, Netherlands). Her work focuses on the Coptic Christians from Egypt and Islam in Southeast Asia. Although these fields seem far apart, Professor van Doorn-Harder connects them by studying gender, leadership, interfaith engagement, and issues pertaining to freedom of religion.


She has written and edited ten books and numerous articles. For her work she has received grants from among others, the Ford Foundation, Fulbright, the University of Oslo, and the Contending Modernities Project of Notre Dame University. She is connected with the Center for Interdisciplinary Research (ZIF) at Bielefeld University (Germany) in an international project ‘Felix Culpa’? Guilt as Culturally Productive Force.


Nelly van Doorn-Harder grew up in the Netherlands, and now lives in the US.  She lived and grew roots in two additional countries:

  • Egypt, where she set up a refugee agency, and studied the Coptic Orthodox Church.

  • Indonesia, where she taught at a seminary and set up a program for interfaith dialogue.

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