Meet Our Wadsworth International Fellows: Reda Merida

With the support of the Wadsworth International Fellowship, Reda Merida will continue his training at Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris, France, hosted by Dilek Sarmis and Rachida Chih.

Born and raised in Algeria, I moved to France after high school to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Political Science. Subsequently, I completed a Master’s degree in Social Sciences from the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers, as well as a Master’s degree in Philosophy from Jean-Jaures University.

Currently, I am a doctoral fellow enrolled at l’Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris, France) where I am conducting research on the Arab reception of existentialism and Jean-Paul Sartre’s work. My research involves studying the role of translators in the circulation of philosophical concepts, as well as analyzing the main transformations through which a thought passes when it is expressed in a culture that is foreign to its initial context. I aim to shed light on the complex interplay between philosophical ideas and their cultural and linguistic context. My research topic falls between historical/cultural anthropology and intellectual history and I am grateful that the “Field, Texts, Interdisciplinarity” Ph.D. program at l’EHESS allows me to pursue this research by blending methodologies from history, anthropology and translation studies.

In my practice as a researcher, I strive to keep one foot firmly planted on “the other side of the Mediterranean” through regular visits to Beirut, Cairo and Algiers and continuing conversation with other scholars and researchers.