Universiteit Leiden

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Yu Ai

PhD candidate

Y. Ai MA
+31 71 527 2727

Yu Ai is a PhD candidate at the Institute for Area Studies.

More information about Yu Ai

PhD research

Muslim immigrant women's experience in non-Muslim society: A comparative study of the Netherlands and Japan

Supervisors are prof. dr. Ivo Smits and dr. Jasmijn Rana (FSW).  

Research project

This research focuses on the experience and individuality of first- generation immigrant Muslim women in Japan and the Netherlands, to examine how highly educated Muslim women who have migrated as international students or expatriates to the two countries exert their agency in accordance with different situations. And how do different social environments affect the ways in which these Muslim migrants create new forms of belonging. The study focuses specifically on how these Muslim immigrant women negotiate their surroundings and how they find ways in which they can maintain their Muslim identity in the two countries that, although both secular, are vastly different in terms of political climate, social infrastructure and immigrant composition. 


  • 西川慧·艾煜「宮城県に住むムスリムたち」、『東北文化研究室紀要』61: 67-812019
  • AI YU “Approaches to agency of Muslim women in a secular society: A case study of migrant Muslim womenin Tohoku, Japan”Tohoku Anthropology Exchange 19:1-21, 2020

PhD candidate

  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Leiden Institute for Area Studies
  • SAS Japan
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