Shelby Smith

Ph.D. Candidate

I am a PhD Candidate with specializations in urban theory, migration, socio-spatial relations, and citizenship. My current research examines the relationship between multiple sites of immigrant sanctuary practices in the United States and the (re)production of sanctuary discourses as both spectacles of the state and the exercise of political power via immigrant-based narratives. Struck by the primacy of sanctuary in contemporary political discourses, my research seeks to elucidate the ways in which these discourses are produced via ethnographic and textual analyses of sanctuary policies and practices, primarily in Tucson, Arizona, Dayton, Ohio, and New Haven, Connecticut.

In addition to my research, I have taught extensively in the department and am dedicated to developing inclusive and equitable courses, especially those that prioritize community engagement.