Sarah Irene Han

Sarah Irene Han

Research Interest

Research Sub-interest

Citizenship, Nation, Gender, Migration, Belonging, Borders, Discourse, Embodiment


Middle East, Arabian Gulf (GCC); United Arab Emirates


Sarah Han’s research is focused on the ethnic minority Baloch women in the United Arab Emirates and how their experiences as Emirati nationals, expatriates, and long-term stateless residents can rupture the citizen-noncitizen binary. Her work considers the incompleteness of legal citizenship, materially grounded in passports, to capture the nuances of lived experiences of national belonging. The various experiences of Baloch women in the UAE offers a unique opportunity to explore questions of citizenship and nationalism, the building of a modern nation state, and the internalization of and responses to precarity and belonging.

Han’s masters thesis explores these questions, building on previous, grant-funded ethnographic research she conducted in 2015 which has been published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Undergraduate Ethnography Vol. 8, no. 1. More recently, she has brought these interests into conversation with human rights and mobility frameworks in an effort to consider the international legal and ontological ramifications of these explorations.


Wheaton College, Illinois, BA in Anthropology, 2016