I grew up in three different countries on three different continents, all of which have undergone massive transformations in the last twenty years. Turkey, where I was born, has been experiencing a fundamental questioning of its Republican form of government and a resurgence of religion in public life, and has sought to plant its feet firmly in Europe through its efforts to join the EU. I lived in Germany from 1989 to 1994 – soon after unification and the collapse of the communist bloc, and experienced the simmering resentment against immigrants, especially Turks. And I have lived in the US since 2005, experiencing firsthand changes in US foreign policy in the aftermath of 9/11 as both a Middle Eastern and a European woman. Such global changes over the last twenty years that not only affect domestic and international politics but also the lives of ordinary individuals form the background to my academic interests. Hence, my research and teaching interests focus on the relationship between religion and politics, Islamic movements and parties, Middle East and North Africa, judicial politics, and democratization.
Kirdiş, Esen & Amina Drhimeur. 2016. "The rise of populism? Comparing incumbent pro-Islamic parties in Turkey and Morocco." Turkish Studies 17(4): 599-617. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14683849.2016.1242068
Kirdiş, Esen. 2016. "From Loyal to Hard Opposition: The Political Transformation of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood." Politics, Religion & Ideology (forthcoming). Published online at:
Kirdiş, Esen. 2016. "Same context, different political paths: Two Islamic movements in Turkey." International Area Studies Review 19(3): 249-265.
Kirdiş, Esen. 2016. “Immoderation: Comparing the Christian Right in the US and Pro-Islamic Movement-Parties in Turkey.” Democratization 23(3): 417-436.
Kirdiş, Esen. 2015. “Between Movement and Party: Islamic Movements in Morocco and the Decision to Enter Party Politics.” Politics, Religion & Ideology 16(1): 65-86. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/21567689.2015.1012159#.VeXSc87TNmF
Kirdiş, Esen. 2015. “The Role of Foreign Policy in Constructing the Party Identity of the Turkish Justice and Development Party (AKP).” Turkish Studies 16(2): 178-194. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14683849.2015.1044444#.VeXSds7TNmE
Shambayati, Hootan and Esen Kirdiş. 2009. “In Pursuit of Contemporary Civilization: Judicial Empowerment in Turkey.” Political Research Quarterly 62(4): 767-780. http://prq.sagepub.com/content/62/4/767.short
2011, PhD, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
2005, BA, Koc University, Istanbul, Turkey