Marie Vannetzel

Marie Vannetzel


A Network on Social Class

EGYCLASS is an International Research Network that aims at providing a comprehensive analysis of social class in Egypt, building on existing links and scientific exchanges between leading researchers in sociology, anthropology, political science, history, and economics.

The network associates more than 70 individual researchers and 6 institutions:

  • CEDEJ (Egypt/France),
  • the Department of Sociology and Anthropology of the American University in Cairo (Egypt),
  • the Orient Institute Beirut (OIB, Germany),
  • the Society and Culture in Motion research cluster (SCM, University of Halle-Wittenberg, Germany),
  • the Centre for Anthropological Research on Affect and Materiality (CARAM, Ghent University, Belgium),
  • and the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Oslo (Norway).
Our activities are organized around four axes:
Axis 1: Socio-history of classifications (coord: Malak Labib and Pierre France)
Axis 2: Space and class (coord: Deena Khalil and Agnès Deboulet)
Axis 3: Ethnography of social classes (coord: Nada El Kouny, Chaymaa Hassabo, and Aymon Kreil)
Axis 4: Elites and dominant classes (coord: Giedrė Šabasevičiūtė and Marine Poirier)











  • March 22: Lauching Event, KMT House, Cairo.        
    Kick-off meeting of the network, Check this video.

Participants: 22 personnes en présentiel, une vingtaine en ligne

  • Monthly Meetings online

Several monthly meetings online were organized throughout the year, with two kinds of workshops: presentations of work in progress and seminars dedicated to reading and discussing texts together.

July 5 – “The Citizens’ Worries”, presentations by Assia Boutaleb and Daniele Cantini.
September 6 –Modernity and the New Middle Classes, reading seminar.
October 4 –Around the book Heiman et al. The Global Middle Classes, presentation by Samuli Schielke.

  • December 5-7: Conference “Studying the Social Classes in Egypt”, CEDEJ-IFAO, Cairo.

Dec, 5: Public Conference organized by Marie Vannetzel,

Program is available here.

Dec, 6: Roundtable OIB-CEDEJ: “Statistics and the social classes”

Participants in the Roundtable:

Hanan Girgis (Executive Vice President of Baseera, the Egyptian Center for Public Opinion research)
May Gadallah (Statistics Manager at Economic Research Forum, Associate Professor at Cairo University)
Howayda Adly Roman (Professor of political science at the National Center for Social and Criminal Research, department of Public Opinion)
Ahmed Atif (Data Scientist, Founder & CEO at Daftar Ahwal Data Research Institute)
Luca Fedi (Employment specialist, International Labour Organization ILO)
Fatma El Zanaty (Professor at Cairo University, Owner of El Zanaty & Associates)
Yahia Shawkat (co-founder and research coordinator of 10 Tooba Built Environment Deprivation Index)

 Dec, 6-7: Two-days Internal workshops by axes: program available here.


  • Monthly Meetings online

January 24 –Marriage Strategies, reading seminar.
February 7 – Class Education, reading seminar.
March 7 – Why do we need the concept class?, presentation by Farha Ghannam.
April 14 – History and sociology of professions in Egypt, presentations by Elisabeth Longuenesse and Sylvia Chiffoleau.
May 2 – Class, Workers, Upheaval, reading seminar.
May 16 – Sociological Profiles of the Middling Citizen (al-muwāṭin al-basīṭ): The Toolbox of Egyptian Sociology during the Nasser Years (1952-1970), presentation by Antoinette Ferrand.
May 23 – Data sources and methods for studying the space-class nexus in Egypt, presentations by Deena Khalil and Corten Perez-Houis.
June 13 – Class distinctions inside the households, presentations by Dalila Ghodbane, Noha Mokhtar and Lina El-Shamy.

  • June 22-24 – 15th Congress of SESAMO (Società per gli studi sul Medio Oriente), Napoli.

Panel “Class, a Useful Category for Ethnography? Case Studies from Egypt and Morocco”, organized by Aymon Kreil and Yasmine Berriane. Program available here.

  • September 26-27 – Side-Event to the Forum Insaniyyat, Tunis.

Writing retreat to elaborate Commented Bibliographies around social classes.

  • November 9-10 – “Cultural Capital and Class Recognition”, CEDEJ, Cairo.

Axis 4 Workshop organized by Marine Poirier, Giedrė Šabasevičiūtė, Daniele Cantini and Marie Vannetzel.
Program available here.


  • January 17 – Seminar “Researching Education in Egypt”, CEDEJ, Cairo.

A conversation with Linda Herrera and Daniele Cantini about their books, Educating Egypt. Civic Values and Ideological Struggles (2022) and Bounded Knowledge. Doctoral Studies in Egypt (2021).
Program available here

  • June 7 – Workshop – preparatory to the conference Rural Worlds and Social Classes, CEDEJ, Cairo.

Organized by Florian Bonnefoi, Idunn Holthe, and Marie Vannetzel, with the scientific committee: Reem Saad, Vanessa Goldman, Saker El Nour, Nada El Kouny, Kawkab Tawfik. 

  • June 16-17 – Conference “Impossible Archives ? Rewriting the Contemporary in Egypt”, AUC-IFAO, Cairo.

Partnership IFAO, American University in Cairo and Egyclass-Axis 1, organized by Malak Labib and Pascale Ghazaleh. Program is available here.

  • October 5-8 – Writing Residency “The Art of Assessing Social Hierarchies: Class Relations in an Ethnographic Perspective”, Fayyoum, Egypt.

Axis 3 collective retreat to work on a special issue, organized by Chaymaa Hassabo, Nada El Kouny, Aymon Kreil and Marie Vannetzel.

Participants: Alexandra Schindler, Ophélie Mercier, Sophie Frankford, Farah Ramzy, Sixtine Deroure, Florian Bonnefoi, Naïma Bouras, Daniele Cantini, Manon Laroche, Pascal Ménoret, Chaymaa Hassabo, Nada El Kouny, Aymon Kreil and Marie Vannetzel. 

  • November 19-20 – Conference “Rural Worlds and Social Classes”, IFAO, Cairo.

Conference organized by Florian Bonnefoi (PhD student), Idunn Holthe (PhD student), and Marie Vannetzel.

Program available here.