Edith Szanto is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Sciences at the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani.  She teaches courses on Middle Eastern History, World History, Comparative World Religions, and Islam. 

Dr. Szanto received her PhD in Religious Studies from the University of Toronto in 2012.  Her dissertation examined Twelver Shi'i practices in Syria, where she spent three years as a Fulbrighter researching popular Islamic practices and working for the UN. 

Dr. Szanto is currently finishing the manuscript of her book, tentatively entitled "Transgressive Traditions: Twelver Shi'ism in Modern Syria."  The book focuses on Twelver Shi'i education, rituals, and discourses at the shrine of Sayyida Zaynab and in the seminaries surrounding the shrine.       

Her new project examines religion in Iraqi Kurdistan, particularly Qadiri Sufism.    


is the beginning

of wisdom. 

  Dr. Edith Szanto

           Scholar of Religion