Nau Lab Faculty and Affiliates

Nau Lab Faculty


Jacqueline Arthur-Montagne is an Assistant Professor of Classics and a new member of the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Democracy Initiative at the University of Virginia. She received her Ph.D. in Classics from Stanford University in 2016. Her scholarship centers on the educational practices and intellectual culture of ancient Greece, and how institutions of schooling in antiquity shaped the legacy of Classical Greece to the present. She has published several articles on Greek literature and cultural history in Classical Philology and Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Studies. Her current book in progress, An Education in Fiction, argues that literate education in antiquity rigorously trained students to discern fact from fiction in written and oral narratives. This research has been awarded a 2021 Fondation Hardt Scholarship. Jacqueline looks forward to collaborating with fellow Democracy Initiative members and partners to explore the relationships between democracy, education, and the humanities in societies past and present.  



Emily Burrill is a scholar of twentieth century West African history and the history of gender and sexuality in French empire. Her scholarship and teaching explore historical questions of gender and belonging in colonial and postcolonial communities, law and society, rights formation, and feminist theory. At UVA, she is Associate Professor in the Department of History and a member of the John Nau, III History and Principles of Democracy Lab. In these roles, she will teach classes on histories of gender and sexuality, modern Africa, and she will develop and support programming in the core lab of the Democracy Initiative.  Burrill’s first monograph was States of Marriage: Gender, Justice, and Rights in Colonial Mali (2015), which won the 2016 French Colonial Historical Society Heggoy Prize. She is also the co-author of two edited volumes: Domestic Violence and the Law in Colonial and Postcolonial Africa (2010) and Legislating Gender and Sexuality in Africa: Human Rights, Society, and the State (2021). She has written numerous articles and chapters on a range of topics including forced marriage, gender and enslavement in the Senegambia, masculinity, and gun rights. Her current book project is an episodic history that explores the gendered implications of citizenship for West Africans living in African territories of the French Union and postcolonial West Africa between 1946 and the mid-1960s.  Before arriving at UVA, Burrill taught for twelve years in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies and the Department of History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. For the past six years, she also served as the Director of the UNC-CH African Studies Center. Through this work she developed commitments to collaborations with international scholars and universities, foreign language study, exploring ethical directions in U.S. study abroad, and supporting international students on U.S. campuses.  Burrill holds a Ph.D. in history from Stanford University (2007) and a master’s degree in history from the University of Vermont (2001). She received her bachelor’s degree in anthropology and French from Mount Holyoke College (1997).


S. Deborah Kang is an immigration, borderlands, and legal historian whose research focuses on the historical and contemporary aspects of US immigration and border policy.  Her first book, The INS on the Line: Making Immigration Law on the US-Mexico Border, 1917-1954, traces the history of US immigration agencies on the US-Mexico border and earned six awards and accolades, including the Henry Adams Prize from the Society for History in the Federal Government, the Theodore Saloutos Book Award from the Immigration and Ethnic History Society, the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians Book Prize, the W. Turrentine Jackson Award from the Western History Association, and the Américo Paredes Book Award for Best Nonfiction Book on Chicano/a, Mexican American and/or Latino/a Studies. It was also recognized as a Finalist for the 2018 Weber-Clements Book Prize by the Western History Association. She is currently writing a second book about US immigration legalization policies from the early twentieth century to the present. In addition, she is co-editing an anthology on the history of undocumented European migration to the United States. Kang’s historical research has been supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Huntington Library, and the Clements Center for Southwest Studies.  Kang also serves as an immigration consultant for the Office of the Federal Public Defender in West Texas, preparing research briefs on the laws criminalizing undocumented immigration. As a former Immigration Policy Fellow at the US Immigration Policy Center at the University of California, San Diego, she co-authored journal articles, working papers, and briefs on the immigration enforcement policies of the Trump administration. Kang has provided expert commentary for documentary filmmakers and major media outlets and has delivered talks on immigration and borderlands history for civic associations throughout the country.

Albert Rivero is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at the University of Virginia.  He studies judicial politics in the United States, with particular interests in the lower federal courts and public attitudes toward the judiciary.  His current research also considers topics such as judicial behavior in voting rights cases, the public's influence on the courts, and the effects of judicial appointments and the diversification of the bench on judicial decision-making.  He received a B.A. from Marquette University and a J.D. and Ph.D. from Harvard University.


Nau Lab Affiliates


Amel Gorani is an international development, peace and conflict, gender, and inclusion specialist with over 20 years’ experience in diverse sectors. Amel has worked for a number of international development agencies, governments, private foundations, academic institutions, and NGOs in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and the US. She has worked extensively on migration and refugee issues, marginalized and vulnerable groups, gender and human rights, political participation, conflict-resolution, peace building, and post-conflict reconstruction.

Amel is currently working as an independent consultant with NGOs and funders in Africa and the Middle East. She recently relocated to Charlottesville from Beirut, Lebanon. Before that she served as Director for the Center for Community and Civic Engagement at Carleton College in Minnesota. She has worked as Senior Advisor on Marginalized Groups for USAID- Sudan, Inclusion Coordinator for the Center for Humanitarian Dialogue in Geneva, and as program officer with the Swedish International Development Agency (Sudan and Somalia programs), and the Open Society Foundations- International Women’s Program in New York. She also served as Executive Director for Sudan Future Care, a humanitarian organization operating out of Eritrea in the war-affected areas in Eastern Sudan.  

Amel holds a Masters degree in Political Science from Uppsala University. She is a native Arabic speaker and fluent in Swedish.