Melissa J. Scott is a Ph.D. candidate in ethnomusicology at the University of California, Berkeley. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Amman, Jordan, her dissertation interrogates the reach and limits of “humanitarianism” as a regime of governance for expressive cultural practices. She further incorporates an historical perspective by examining how broader legacies of forced migration inform contemporary music-making in Jordan.
Melissa’s dissertation research is supported by a Fulbright-Hays DDRA from the U.S. Department of Education; an ACOR-CAORC Pre-Doctoral Fellowship with the American Center of Research in Amman, Jordan; and a Sultan Program Dissertation Fellowship from the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Berkeley. She holds an MA in ethnomusicology from Berkeley and a BA in music from the University of Chicago. She has also studied oud and the Arabic language in Jordan, Oman, and California, and from 2017–2018 she was a fellow at the Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) at the American University in Cairo.