Skip to main content
Expand AU Menu

Current SIS PhD Students

Timothy Seidel

Timothy Seidel works at the intersections of peacebuilding, development, politics, and religion. He is a doctoral candidate and adjunct instructor in the School of International Service at American University in Washington, DC. Seidel has worked in various development and peacebuilding contexts in North America and the Middle East. His current research draws from discourse and postcolonial theory to look at peacebuilding and nonviolent resistance in Palestine. Seidel's dissertation is an inquiry into the discursive construction and obfuscation of Palestinian subjectivity by examining narrations of nonviolent resistance in and about Palestine. He is interested in interpretivist research methods that include discourse, narrative, and ethnographic approaches.

Previous Education

2001-2003 American University, School of International Service, Washington, DC
Master of Arts, International Peace and Conflict Resolution

2001-2003 Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington, DC
Master of Theological Studies 

1995-1999 Messiah College, Grantham, PA Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry, Mathematics, Cultural Anthropology

Previous Employment Experience

2013-Present Lancaster Theological Seminary, Lancaster, PA Adjunct Instructor

2007-2012 Mennonite Central Committee Akron, PA
Director, Peace and Justice Ministries

2004-2007 Mennonite Central Committee Bethlehem, Palestine
Peace Development Worker, Palestine Program

1999-2001 New Testament Christian School, Norton, MA
High School Science and Math Teacher

Research Interests

Peacebuilding and conflict transformation; global development; nonviolence and civil resistance; religion and politics; theological studies; postcolonial and critical theory; anti-oppression practice; Middle East studies; interpretivist research methods including discourse, narrative, and ethnographic approaches.


My Dissertation

Title: "Where Is the Palestinian Gandhi?": Power and Resistance in Late Modernity 

Committee: Mohammed Abu-Nimer (SIS, chair), Carolyn Gallaher (SIS), Peter Dula (EMU)

Selected Publications

  • "Development, Religion, and Modernity in Palestine-Israel," CrossCurrents 62.4 (December 2012): 424-441.


  • “Culture, Religion, and Politics in International Mediation” (with Mohammed Abu-Nimer) in The Handbook of Mediation: Theory, Research and Practice, ed. Alexia Georgakopoulos (London: Routledge, 2017).
  • “Religion, Politics, and Conflict Transformation in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories” (with Mohammed Abu-Nimer) in Conflict Transformation and the Palestinians: Dynamics of Peace and Justice under Occupation, eds. Alpaslan Özerdem, Chuck Thiessen, and Mufid Qassoum (London: Routledge, 2016).
  • "Peace and Reconciliation Processes" (with Mohammed Abu-Nimer) in The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity and Nationalism, John Stone, Xiaoshuo Hou, Rutledge Dennis, Polly Rizova, and Anthony Smith, editors (Wiley-Blackwell, 2014).
  • "Development as Peacebuilding and Resistance: Alternative Narratives of Nonviolence in Palestine-Israel" in Nonviolent Resistance in the Second Intifada: Activism and Advocacy, Maia Carter Hallward and Julie Norman, editors (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011).

Selected Presentations

  • “The Claims of Modernity: Liberal Peace, Sacred Violence, and State Sovereignty,” International Studies Association, Atlanta, GA, March 2016 & International Studies Association-Northeast, Providence, RI, November 2015.
  • “‘Occupied Territory Is Occupied Territory’: James Baldwin, Palestine, and the Possibilities of Transnational Solidarity,” International Studies Association, Atlanta, GA, March 2016 & Peace and Justice Studies Association, Harrisonburg, VA, October 2015.
  • “Religion and Politics in International Peacebuilding: Challenges and Possibilities” (with Mohammed Abu-Nimer), International Studies Association, Atlanta, GA, March 2016.
  • “‘Where Is the Palestinian Gandhi?’: Power and Resistance in Late Modernity,” International Studies Association, New Orleans, LA, February 2015.
  • "Narrating Nonviolence: Postcolonial Interrogations of Resistance in Palestine," Middle East Studies Association (MESA), Washington, DC, November 2014.
  • "Exploring Religion and the Post-Secular in Peacebuilding Theory and Practice," Peace and Justice Studies Association (PJSA), San Diego, CA, October 2014.