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Home / Leah Sarat
  • School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Leah Sarat's work focuses on ways in which people draw upon religion to confront the physical, emotional, and psychological challenges of migration.

Her book, "Fire in the Canyon: Religion, Migration, and the Mexican Dream" centers on the relationship between migration and tourism in an indigenous community in central Mexico. Sarat's project, "Faith Behind Bars: Encountering Immigrant Detention in Arizona," examines how chaplains, faith-based volunteers, and immigrant detainees at Arizona’s Eloy Detention facility draw upon religious narratives and practices to explain, survive, and resist the realities of immigration detention.

Sarat is also a contributor to "States of Incarceration," a public humanities collaboration of more than 20 universities that has produced a travelling exhibit and web platform, and public dialogues on the history and current realities of mass incarceration throughout the U.S.

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(480) 965-9451


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Suzanne Wilson

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(480) 965-9681

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In the news

Those contemplating the journey from Central America — whether they intend to request asylum or cross the border undetected — face limited options. Often they must choose between life-threatening danger in their countries of origin and danger due to environmental factors or violence during the migration journey. Bringing religion into the conversation provides a counterweight to common claims that asylum seekers are merely opportunistic.

— Leah Sarat, ASU Now