Manar Ellethy is a PhD candidate in American History / American Studies at the RIAS and Leiden University on the larger research project “Racial Democracy: Challenges to Civic Democratic Ideals in American History,” sponsored by the Stichting Praesidium Libertatis at Leiden University.

Manar Ellethy holds a Master’s degree in International Relations from Leiden University with a specialization in Culture and Politics. Throughout her academic journey she has focused on studying the intersection between politics and visual/popular culture in the American context as well as themes of cultural resistance and activism. Before starting her PhD at RIAS, she worked as a researcher and editor in the academic, corporate and non-profit sector. Originally from Cairo, Egypt, Manar grew up in Greece and moved later with her family to the Netherlands in 2008.

Her research, starting January 2021, will explore traces of the recently popular and contested term post-truth in white supremacist populist discourses in the Deep South in the post WWII era. Moreover, she will study the reaction in visual culture initiated by the Black Power movement to subvert such discourses and reclaim democracy and its ideals. Her aim is to study culture as an effective and essential way of questioning the authority of the spectacle created by populist post-truth discourses and policies.