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Tenenbaum Sophomore Tutorials in Liberal Arts Student Overview

No Longer Accepting Applications for Spring

Spring 2022 Tenenbaum Seminar

INTD 2000: Home and the World Diasporic Arab-American Experiences

Taught by:
Edwige Tamalet
French & Italian Department &
Asmaa Mansour
2022 Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow

Tenenbaum Scholars will:

  • Take a seminar based on a transcendental issue in liberal arts
  • Meet individually with two professors in Oxford-style tutorials
  • Launch their own projects with a faculty mentor
  • Receive $1,000 to enhance their research


The Tenenbaum Sophomore Tutorials bring together world-class faculty and students in small, team-taught seminars and individual tutorial discussions, creating the ideal conditions for intellectual exchange for the entire academic year. This is a competitive opportunity to learn and explore your intellectual passion as well as do humanistic research in a personalized setting.

In their first semester in the Tenenbaum Program in the Liberal Arts, a group of 12 students will join two professors selected from our research faculty in a team-taught interdisciplinary seminar on a universal topic. This is a 4-credit course that will include weekly meetings for a 2.5-hour co-taught seminar and biweekly in one-on-one sessions with one of the professors in a 45-minute tutorial-style discussion. The course would be one of your 5 courses in the fall as an intensive Oxford-style experience. If your 5 classes equal more than 17 credit hours, please consult with Associate Dean Vicki Mayer.

Tenenbaum seminar leaders will enhance learning through extracurricular events and activities. The learning objective of the tutorials is to prepare sophomores for original inquiry and research in the humanities.

The subsequent term builds on the tutorial-style relationship and helps students strengthen written and oral communication skills while pursuing independent research projects. Students work with a faculty mentor drawn from a roster available, pre-approved Liberal Arts faculty to extend discoveries in a new direction in a 4-credit independent study. Each student will have up to a $1000 research budget to assist their inquiries. Students’ work with faculty may result in written papers or creative work. Late in the semester, students share their projects with the group in a symposium attended by students, Tenenbaum faculty fellows, and invited guests. The study would be one of your 5 courses in spring to allow for free inquiry and in-depth exploration of your topic. If your 5 classes equal more than 17 credit hours, please consult with Associate Dean Vicki Mayer.

2022 Tenenbaum Sophomore Tutorials Seminar Topic

Home and the World: Diasporic Arab-American Experiences.
INTD 2000: Home and the World: Diasporic Arab-American Experiences will meet Mondays 3-5:30 pm (tutorial times to be determined).
4 credits

The concept of “Home” is nearly universal. Home is an imagined homeland in the domain of nostalgia, literature, and arts, but it is also an actual social location full of struggles and conflicts over diversity, social justice, and discrimination. In our seminar and tutorials, we will plumb the meanings of home through the lens of diasporic Arab-American experiences with memory, gender and identity, and religions. 

Taught by acclaimed faculty Edwige Tamalet Talbayev (French & Italian Department) and Asmaa Mansour (2022 Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow), they will guide students to consider archival information alongside literary narratives and stories of the concept of Home in general and more specifically as it relates to diasporic communities, particularly that of Arab-Americans.

Edwige Tamalet Talbayev (Ph.D., University of California, San Diego) is an Associate Professor of French as well as the Director of Middle East and North African Studies. Her work focuses on the intersection of modernity, postcoloniality, and transnationalism in the Maghreb and the Mediterranean contact zone. Her first book The Transcontinental Maghreb: Francophone Literature across the Mediterranean (2017) argues for a transmaritime deployment of the Maghreb across the Mediterranean. Engaging the space of the sea, the hybridity it produces, and the way it has shaped such historical dynamics as globalization, imperialism, decolonization, and nationalism, the book rethinks the very nature of postcolonial histories and identities along its shores. Her current project, “Water Logics,” extends the reflection on the Mediterranean and migration to other maritime contexts across the globe.

Asmaa Mansour (Ph.D., University of Texas, San Antonio) is the recipient of the Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship 2021-2022. Her research interests include: Postcolonial Arabic Literature, Border Studies, Chicana and Latinx Studies, Immigrant narratives, Islamic feminism, African Diasporic Literature, Comparative Studies, and decolonial theory. Mansour’s book project examines autobiographical writings by Egyptian women from the 1950s to the present and breaks new ground in theorizing Arab women’s autobiographies. As a Fulbright alumna, she continues to engage in cross-cultural conversations and research that bridge the United States with the Arab and Muslim World.

View the 2021 Final Projects.

Application Procedure for Students

Online applications to the Tenenbaum Program at Tulane must include a statement of interest, any preparatory coursework or experiences, and a signature from the students’ NTC advisor affirming the students’ academic standing. Students must commit to stay in the program and remain in good standing for the duration of the theme year. Students will be selected by a committee including the seminar leaders and members of the Dean’s Office. Prospective Tenenbaum Sophomore Tutorials students will have access to the selected seminar theme in advance of course selection.

Applications are no longer being accepted for the spring 2022 cohort.


May I still apply if I am a sophomore according to my audit but not on my transcript?

Yes. Please explain the discrepancy in the section “Other Information.”

May students in another School at Tulane apply for the Program?

Students apply to this program with the expectation that they hope to major in a liberal arts discipline or program. Students in other Schools should explain how they intend to do a major in the liberal arts.

May I do an independent study without doing the seminar?

You may always elect to do an independent study, but it would not be part of the Tenenbaum Sophomore Tutorials Program or receive Program sponsorship.

May I take the fall seminar but not do an independent study in spring?

We would expect every student in the program do independent research with a faculty mentor. If there is an extenuating circumstance around the timing, please explain the discrepancy in the section “Other Information.”

I am already taking more than 15 credits. How much work is this Program?

The year-long program is 8-credits. We would expect students to commit to this program in lieu of taking more than five courses per semester.