PhD candidate, discipline: Languages and culture

Leiden, Netherlands
Nov 09, 2017
Dec 02, 2017
Contract Type
Full Time
Job Type
PhD / Doctoral
Faculty of Humanities, Leiden University Centre for Linguistics has a vacancy for a

PhD candidate, discipline: Languages and culture (1.0 FTE)
Vacancy number 17-468

Project description

LUCL, Faculty of Humanities, Leiden University, opens a PhD position for a 4 years period within the NWO financed VIDI project 'Crossroads. European cultural diplomacy and Arab Christians in Palestine. A connected history'. This project looks at the relationship between the European cultural and linguistic agenda and the local identity formation process, and social and religious transformations of Arab Christian communities in Palestine, when the British ruled via the Mandate. It will enquire the role of culture and languages in European policies regarding the Arabs of Palestine and the ways Arab Christians used culture and languages to define their place in the proto-national and religious configuration between 1920 and 1950.

The candidate to this PhD position will be responsible for the development of the subproject 'Between the Holy Land and the World: the Melkite community of Palestine (1920-1950)' . This subproject answers the question to how Melkite hierarchy and population react to the mixture of diverse cultures as an affirmation of their local roots and source of nationalism? What was the role of the Melkites in the elaboration of the Holy See's views of Arabs after WWI?

For a description of the project, please check .

Key responsibilities
  • Writing a dissertation in English within four years;
  • Submitting research results for publication to international peer-reviewed academic journals;
  • Attending and actively participating in all the team meetings;
  • Jointly contribute to the team's database (as a research tool for the whole project);
  • Presenting papers at conferences and workshops;
  • Co-organizing conferences and workshops;
  • Teaching some undergraduate courses in the second and third year of appointment.

Selection criteria
  • (Research) MA degree in History (or a discipline closely connected with the theme of the PhD project);
  • Written and oral fluency in English and Arabic (and a good command of French);
  • Demonstrable interest for research premises of the project;
  • Willingness to work within a team and an international academic community that aspires to scholarly excellence;
  • A problem-focused approach to research and demonstrable ability to apply theoretical and comparative frameworks;
  • Ability to work both independently and as a member of a team.

Research at our faculty/ institute

The Faculty of Humanities is rich in expertise in fields such as philosophy, religious studies, history, art history, literature, linguistics and area studies covering nearly every region of the world. With its staff of 995, the faculty provides 27 master's and 25 bachelor's programmes for over 7,000 students based at locations in Leiden's historic city centre and in modern buildings in The Hague. For more information .

Leiden University has a longstanding tradition in research in the world's languages and features unique linguistic expertise. LUCL combines current theoretical insights and modern experimental methods in its research profile area "Language Diversity in the World". For more information, see .

Terms and conditions

The employment will be for a period of in total four years leading to the successful completion of a PhD thesis. First a contract of 18 months with an extension of 30 months after positive evaluation of progress and skills development. We offer a position for 38 hours per week. The position is available from 1 April (or 1 May) 2018 or as soon as possible thereafter. The appointment will be under the terms of the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities. The gross monthly salary is €2,222 in the first year, increasing to €2,840 gross per month in the final year.

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3%), and training and career development. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. More at .


Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.


Enquiries can be made to Dr. Karène Sanchez Summerer, email .


Applications must be received no later than 10 January 2018. Interviews will be scheduled for February 2018. Applications should be in English, and be submitted by email to , with the items listed below included in this order in ONE single PDF document named 'FAMILY NAME - Given name - vacancy title/number:
  • A cover letter stating your motivation for this position;
  • An original thesis project description, written in English, of up to four pages;
  • A CV (containing a complete overview of education, supervised professional training and professional work);
  • The names of 2 potential academic referees, including contact details (relation to applicant, e-mail address and phone number);
  • Your Master's Thesis;
  • Other works (published or unpublished) which the applicant wishes to be taken into consideration during the assessment process, and a description of these.
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