Lea Taragin-Zeller is a cultural anthropologist with research interests in religion, medicine, gender and reproductive politics. She is Assistant Professor of Cultural Studies and Public Policy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and an affiliated scholar at the Reproductive Sociology Research Group (ReproSoc), University of Cambridge. Lea has published in leading international journals, such as American Anthropologist, Medical Anthropology, Science Communication and Public Understanding of Science.
Over the years, she has developed a comparative and interdisciplinary research method to examine state-minority politics on different scalar levels. Her book “The State of Desire: Religion and Reproductive Politics in the Promised Land” (NYU Press) ethnographically analyzes the ways Orthodox Jews reorient conflicting social, religious, and national desires amidst shifting forms in Israel’s reproductive governance. More recently, she has been studying Jewish-Muslim interfaith initiatives to analyse how female migrants and minorities come together vis-à-vis political and social transformations in a growing Islamaphobic and antisemitic Britain. She has also been tracing the impact of COVID-19 on religious minority groups while developing a model of inclusive science and health communication in Israel, the UK and the US. Prior to joining Hebrew University, she completed her PhD in Sociology and Anthropology at Hebrew University, which was followed by postdoctoral research at the Technion and the University of Cambridge.