Gloria Yayra A. Ayee

Gloria Yayra A. Ayee

Lecturer, Harvard Undergraduate Program in Government
Gloria Ayee

Gloria Yayra A. Ayee is a Lecturer in the Department of Government at Harvard University.  

Ayee is a political scientist with expertise in behavior and identity politics, and race and ethnic politics. She teaches courses at Harvard College and at the Harvard Extension School. Her research interests center on American politics, comparative politics, human rights, transitional justice, truth and reconciliation commissions, race and civil rights policy, African politics, political institutions, political reconciliation, media policy and politics, politics and popular culture, and immigrant political incorporation. Ayee earned her Ph.D. in Political Science and a Graduate Certificate in African and African American Studies from Duke University. She also holds Master’s degrees in Political Science and Liberal Studies, both from Duke University. Her Bachelor’s degree is in English Literature from Dordt University. 

Ayee is the co-editor (along with Elena V. Shabliy and Dmitry V. Kurochkin) of Global Perspectives on Women's Leadership and Gender (In)Equality (2020, Palgrave Macmillan) and Women’s Human Rights in Nineteenth Century Literature and Culture (2020, Lexington Books). Ayee is the co-author of “White House, Black Mother: Michelle Obama and the Politics of Motherhood as First Lady” (published in the journal Politics & Gender in 2019). She also co-authored “Race, Power, and Knowledge: Tracing the Roots of Exclusion in the Development of Political Science in the United States” (published in Politics, Groups, and Identities in 2016), which examines the complex relationship between racial ideologies and the development of the discipline of political science in the United States.  

Ayee’s dissertation, titled Restorative Justice and Political Forgiveness: A Comparative Analysis of Truth and Reconciliation Commissions, is a comparative, cross-national study of truth and reconciliation commissions (TRCs) in countries that have used these extra-judicial institutions to pursue justice and promote national reconciliation following a period of civil unrest marked by severe human rights abuses. Her research seeks to determine why there has been a proliferation of TRCs around the world in recent years, and whether the perceived effectiveness of these commissions is real and substantial. Her work considers the institutional design and composition of TRCs, as well as the roles that these commissions play in the democratic transformation of nations with a history of civil conflict and human rights abuses. 


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