Zeb Rifaqat

Professional Bio 

Zeb Rifaqat is a core course instructor at Stevenson College, UC Santa Cruz. In this role, Zeb introduces incoming freshmen to both secular and religious, Eastern and Western existentialist texts through the theme of self and society. A social anthropologist, trained in Pakistan and USA, she studies and considers both as home. Her academic work explores the convergence of citizen, state, and society through the lens of politics, gender, and governmentality in postcolonial South Asia and Muslim cultures. Over the past sixteen years, as an academic who has constantly traversed through a rapidly polarizing world, she has pursued her interest in how citizens experience and strategically navigate the state in their everyday lives. A big believer in the utter necessity of difference to better understanding the self and attaining an ideal society; Zeb encourages her students to explore the self through the other. She can be contacted at zrifaqat@ucsc.edu.

Area of Expertise 

My academic training is in social anthropology. I graduated from the anthropology program at UC Santa Cruz in 2011. My doctoral dissertation was titled The Governance Game: Contradictory Discourses of Power, Politics, and Change in Pakistan. As a political anthropologist, I have conducted extensive fieldwork in Pakistan focused governance and development practices. My region of expertise is South Asia and the Muslim worlds.

Workshop Locations 
Institutional Affiliation 
Professional Title 
Zeb Rifaqat