Maryam Griffin

Associate Professor

Maryam Griffin

B.A. Political Science, UCLA
J.D. with Critical Race Studies Specialization, UCLA School of Law
M.A. Sociology, UC Santa Barbara
Ph.D. Sociology, UC Santa Barbara

Office Number: UW2-214
Mailing Box: 358530, 18115 Campus Way NE, Bothell, WA 98011-8246


I approach teaching with a conviction that the space of the classroom is not so cleanly separated from the broader world; we are community members when we are on campus just as we are scholars when we move about our lives off-campus. As such, I encourage students to always connect the information and ideas we engage in class with the thoughts and experiences they have accumulated beyond the classroom.

As a teacher, I aim to use educational tools to empower students. This involves developing students’ capacity to take responsibility for their own learning, to participate in the production of knowledge, and to engage ideas in both critical and socially responsible ways. I ask that students come to class with a genuine intellectual curiosity and a generous respect for those around them. It is my hope that the scholarly tools we hone together remain with students long after they leave my class.

Recent Courses Taught

BIS 279 Introduction to Law and Society
BIS 353 Human Rights in Theory and Practice
BIS 414 Special Topics in Human Rights: Freedom of Movement


My research agenda is concerned with ordinary people’s movements—both physical and political—and how they confront law and state power in quotidian and spectacular ways. I am currently working on a book about Palestinian public transportation in the West Bank as a productive site of social struggle, where popular demands for freedom are expressed through implied and overt challenges to settler colonialism. I have previously worked on a study about the way college students of Middle Eastern descent organized to influence the way they are racialized and express their racial identities.

Selected Publications

  • Vehicles of Decolonization: Public Transit in the Palestinian West Bank. 2021. Temple University Press (Critical Race, Indigeneity, and Relationality series).
  • “Transcending Enclosures by Bus: Public Transit Protests, Frame Mobility, and the Many Facets of Colonial Occupation.” 2020. Critique of Anthropology. Vol 40(3), 298-322.
  • “Of Boxes and Pen: Forged and Forging Racial Categories at a Wartime U.S. University” in Arshad I. Ali & Tracy L. Buenavista, Eds., Education at War: The Fight for Students of Color in America’s Public Schools. 2018. Fordham University Press.
  • Review of Race in the Shadow of Law: State violence in contemporary Europe by Eddie Bruce-Jones. Oct. 2017. Race & Class 59(2).
  • Co-edited with William I. Robinson. We Will Not Be Silenced: The Academic Repression of Israel’s Critics. 2017. AK Press (U.S.) and Pluto Press (U.K.).
  • “Freedom Rides in Palestine: Racial Segregation and Grassroots Politics on the Bus.” 2015. Race & Class