Ajmal Hussain joined Warwick as Assistant Professor of Sociology in December 2020. Prior to this he was Research Fellow in Sociology at the University of Manchester, where he led the UK element of research and dissemination - with young Muslims in an urban setting - on a large Horizon 2020 collaborative project concerned with radicalisation, young people and equality. He has been recipient of a number of commendations and awards for the societal impact of his research. Ajmal obtained his PhD from the University of Manchester and also holds degrees in Politics and Contemporary History (Brunel, SUNY Brockport) and Race and Ethnic Relations (Birkbeck, London). Ajmal has held visiting fellowships at LSE Cities and Aston University.
Ajmal’s research interests and activity are broadly located in urban and cultural sociology, and straddle the conceptual, methodological and impact in equal measure.
Conceptually, Ajmal is interested in the translation of Muslim culture and tradition across time/space and particularly in postcolonial societies of contemporary Europe. This incorporates interests in South Asian diaspora, migration and settlement, multiculturalism, racism and resistance, popular and political representation, political and moral economy of the ‘urban enclave’ and governmentality and biopolitics in relation to the ‘war on terror’. His book in progress, tentatively titled Urban Rituals documents the emergence of Muslim vernacular culture through analysis of the interaction between the material, social, and narrative life of the inner city. It makes use of work in the areas of affect, infrastructure and assemblage to develop a new theoretical framework for understanding the relationship between multiculture and faith in everyday urban life.
Methodologically, Ajmal is interested in participatory as well as multi-sensory and artistic means for accessing and representing social life. In his research to date he has collaborated with institutional and civil society actors at the city level as both users and producers of knowledge. Ajmal has considerable experience of dissemination and outreach work at EU level as well as with national and local government in the UK.
Ajmal is currently Principal Investigator of the UK case study for the new project QUEST; funded from the sixth NORFACE transnational programme on Democratic governance in a turbulent age (2020-23). This is a collaborative endeavour with a number of civil society actors engaged in anti-racism within the city of Birmingham (UK). The project is also a comparative venture with academics and further collaboration partners from the cities of Madrid, Oslo and Paris.
Hussain, A (2018) ‘How did we get to where we are now?’ Reflecting on Stuart Hall in Birmingham, Identities: Global Studies in Culture and Power, 25:1, 35-40
Hussain, A., Higson, H, & Robinson, J (2018) Birmingham Case Study: Lozells & East Handsworth and Bordesley Green, in Güntner, S., Seukwa, LH., Gehrke, AM & Robinson, J (eds.) Local Matters: How neighbourhoods and services affect the social inclusion and exclusion of young people in European cities. Berlin. Peter Lang GmbH. pp 79-10
Hussain, A. (2017) Infrastructures of Hope: young people’s everyday strategies of survival and innovation in a post-crisis UK city, in Schroeder, J & Seukwa, LH (eds) Social Educational Work: European debates and projects. Springer VS.
Hussain, A (2015) (Dis)locating Muslims in Britain Today, in Toguslu, E (ed) Everyday Life Practices of Muslims in Europe: Aesthetics and Consumption. Leuven. University of Leuven Press. pp 175-192
Hussain, A (2014) Transgressing community: the case of Muslims in a twenty-first-century British city, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 37:4, 621-635.
with Bhattcharyya, G., Cowles, J. & Garner, S (2012) Communities, Centres, Connections, Disconnections: Some Reflections on the Riots in Birmingham. Sociological Research Online, 17 (1) 11
Hussain, A; Pilkington H; Simcock K; Nicholas, J; Vickers, H & Rogerson, L (2019) Talking our way out of conflict Critical: reflections on ‘mediated dialogue’ as a tool for secondary level Countering Violent Extremism (CVE). Commission for Countering Extremism.
with Acik, N (2018) Cohesion again? Learning lessons from the ‘between’ Policy@Manchester. (Posted on 10 May 2018)
Hussain, A & Meer, N (2017) Framing Muslim Integration, in Islamophobia: Still a Challenge for us all (A 20th anniversary report). The Runnymede Trust.
Hussain, A (2017) A Greater Manchester approach to tackling radicalisation Policy@Manchester. (Posted on 4 July 2017)
Hussain, A (2013) Radio Muslims: Disparate Voices on the Same Wavelength. Runnymede Perspectives. Runnymede Trust.
with Alexander, C & Redclift, V (2013) Introduction: the New Muslims. Runnymede Perspectives. Runnymede Trust.
Hussain, A (2011) Behind the Birmingham riots: 'the ultimate sacrifice for peace' Guardian Society special feature ‘Behind the Riots’. (Posted 7 September 2011)