Dr Chihab El Khachab

Chihab El Khachab

Research Affiliate

I am currently a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge. I was a Junior Research Fellow in Christ Church between 2016 and 2020, and I hold a DPhil in Anthropology from the University of Oxford. My doctoral research consisted in an ethnographic study of the Egyptian film industry, with particular attention to labour dynamics, production practices, and the impact of digital technologies on filmmaking. What I sought to understand was how everyday technological use can explain, in part, the process of cinematic creation, and in other part, how filmmakers conceive and manage their unpredictable future. This research is forthcoming as a monograph entitled Making Film in Egypt: How Labor, Technology and Mediation Shape the Industry, to be published by the American University in Cairo Press. My current project combines historical and ethnographic methods to examine everyday bureaucratic practices of state legitimation at the Ministry of Culture in Egypt.

Selected publications:

(Forthcoming): “The Reification of Concrete Work in Egyptian Film Production”, Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

2019: “The Sobky Recipe and the Struggle over ‘the Popular’ in Egypt”, Arab Studies Journal, 27 (1): 34-61

2017: “State Control over Film Production in Egypt”, Arab Media & Society, 23 (Winter/Spring).

2016: “‘What Does it Look Like?’: On the Use of Intermediary Images in Egyptian Film Production”, Visual Anthropology Review, 32 (2): 168-180

2016: “Living in Darkness: Internet Humour and the Politics of Egypt’s Electricity Infrastructure”, Anthropology Today, 32 (4): 21-24


Personal website: http://chihabelkhachab.com/