Dr Noam Leshem

Associate Professor in Cultural and Political Geography, 

United Kingdom

PhDs supervised to completion
Hebrew, English
United Kingdom

Research Focus

My work documents violent conflicts and their aftermath, specifically addressing how these events remake the relations between the state and those subjected to it. I have written extensively on settler colonial space and the violent transformations of Indigenous landscapes. This is the subject of my first book, Life After Ruin (Cambridge University Press, 2017) and the focus of my current research on the agency of displaced Palestinian communities in determining the fate of excavated cultural heritage under ongoing conditions of settler colonial dispossession.

My forthcoming book, Edges of Care (Chicago University Press, 2024) offers a political history of No Man’s Land. Based on nearly a decade of field and archival research, the book is a granular account of life under conditions of extreme sovereign abandonment. Particular attention is dedicated to the Middle East, where entire regions have been subjected to systemic deprivation and confinement. Through extensive ethnographic work in Palestine and Syria, the book grapples with the ways contemporary siege is more than a form of extreme punishment. Instead, I argue that these spaces radically redefine the very logic of sovereign care.

Research Groups

  • Politics State and Space, Department of Geography, Durham University


  • Occupation Debris: Decolonising Archaeology in Palestine-Israel (Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK, 2023-2026)


  • Associate Professor in Cultural and Political Geography

Global goals

Target 16.1
Target 16.7
Target 16.8
Target 16.10


  • United Kingdom