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Department of Geography


Caroline R. Nagel

Title: Professor; Director of Graduate Studies
Department: Geography
College of Arts and Sciences
Phone: 803-777-5234
Office: Callcott, Room 226

Curriculum Vitae [pdf]
Personal website
Department of Geography

Caroline Nagel


Caroline Nagel is Professor of Geography at the University of South Carolina.  She received her B.A. in Political Science and Latin American Studies from the University of California Berkeley, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Colorado, Boulder.  Prior to her arrival at the university, Caroline was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Kentucky and a lecturer in Geography at Loughborough University (United Kingdom).  Caroline is Associate Editor of Political Geography.


Caroline is a broadly trained human geographer whose interests lie at the intersection of urban, cultural, and political geography. As a migration specialist, Caroline has long been interested in the politics of identity, integration, and citizenship in immigrant-receiving contexts. Her work on British Arab and Arab American activists (with Lynn Staeheli) and on Christian outreach to immigrants in the U.S. South (with Patricia Ehrkamp) has explored themes of transnationalism, ethnic formation, multicultural discourse, immigrant activism, and religious identity. Underlying all of her work on migration is a concern with the everyday, place-based production and negotiation of social membership and belonging. Her years of teaching and research on immigration are reflected in her 2016 book, co-authored with Liz Mavroudi, entitled Global Migration: Patterns, Processes, and Politics (Routledge). Caroline also has an interest in Lebanon that stems from her work on Arab immigrants. Having visited Lebanon shortly after the country’s civil war, Caroline returned as a Fulbright scholar in 2010-11 and was based at the American University of Beirut. Her work on Lebanon has focused on the redevelopment of Beirut and the role of NGOs in producing new citizenship discourses in a fragmented political landscape. Caroline’s current research explores the political subjectivities of young Christians who participate in short-term overseas missions. This research asks how young people come to understand themselves as being in community with, and as having obligations to, faraway people and places. It also examines the tensions and overlaps between ideas of Christian mission and more secular conceptions of ‘global citizenship’ and humanitarianism.


  • GEOG 121: Globalization and World Regions
  • GEOG 225: Geography of Europe
  • GEOG 344: Geographies of U.S. Cities
  • GEOG 512: Migration and Globalization
  • GEOG 735: Graduate Seminar in Political Geography 

Representative Publications 

Nagel, C. (2021).  Doing missions right: Popular development imaginaries and practices among US evangelicals, Geoforum, DOI:

Nagel, C. (2020). The “problem” of religion in the secular state: Sectarianism and state formation in Lebanon, in S. Moisio, A. Jonas, N. Koch, C. Lizotte, and J. Luukkonen (eds), Handbook on the Changing Geographies of the State: New Spaces of Geopolitics. Northampton, UK: Edward Elgar.

Nagel, C. and Boyle, P. (2019).  Migration, in A. Kobayashi (ed.), International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (2nd Edition), Elsevier.

Nagel, C. (2018). Christian short-term missions: Creating global citizens? Geopolitics. DOI:

Nagel, C. (2018). Southern Exceptionalism and the perils of region, The Professional Geographer DOI: 10.1080/00330124.2018.1455521.

Ehrkamp, P. and Nagel, C. (2017). Policing the borders of church and societal membership: Immigrant and faith-based communities in the U.S. South, Territory, Politics and Governance 5(3): 318-331.

Nagel, C. and Ehrkamp, P. (2017).  Immigration, Christian faith communities, and the practice of multiculturalism in the U.S. South, Ethnic and Racial Studies 40(1): 190-208.

Nagel, C. (2016).  Southern hospitality? Islamophobia and the politicization of refugees in South Carolina during the 2016 election season, Southeastern Geographer 56(3): 283-290.

Nagel, C. and Ehrkamp, P. (2016).  Deserving welcome? Immigrants, Christian faith communities, and the contentious politics of belonging in the U.S. South, Antipode 48(4): 1040-1058.

Nagel, C. and Staeheli, L. (2016). Nature, environmentalism, and the politics of citizenship in post-civil war Lebanon, Cultural Geographies 23(2): 247-263. 

Nagel, C., and Staeheli, L. (2015). International donors, NGOs, and the geopolitics of youth citizenship in contemporary Lebanon, Geopolitics 20(2): 223-247.

Ehrkamp, P. and Nagel. C. (2014). Under the radar: Undocumented immigrants, Christian faith communities, and the precarious spaces of welcome in the U.S. South, Annals of the Association of American Geographers 104: 319-328. 

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.