Many contributed to make this journey possible. I would like to thank Ghassan Hage who provided great insights that have contributed to make this book stronger. He has been an intellectual mentor throughout my journey as a doctoral candidate, and I am grateful to have worked with him. A special thank you to Katarzyna Pieprzak, Roger Benjamin, Trinidad Rico, Victoria Bernal, Stephen Pascoe and Robert Pascoe for providing insightful comments and helping with earlier versions of the manuscript. I am also very grateful to Jean-Claude Schwarz, who helped with the photos in this book, and Martin Van Wyss, who designed the map of Tunisia. Thank you.
My research about and in Tunisia was funded by an Australian Postgraduate Award and a Fieldwork Grant from the Department of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne. In Tunisia, I am grateful to a number of people for sharing their time and expertise with me. First, I would like to thank Adnan Louhichi, ex-director of the Institut National du Patrimoine(INP),and Samir Aounallah, ex-director of the Division du Dévelopment Muséographique(DDM), for welcoming me at the INP and facilitating my research. I am very grateful to the curatorial team of the Dar Ben Abdallah, as well as Naceur Baklouti, Samira Gargouri-Sethom, Imen Kanzari, Nadjib Selawti, Habib Kazdaghli and Mohammed Haouas for providing thoughtful answers to my questions. More specifically, I would like to thank Sonia Hamzaoui and Habib Ben Younes for their incredible intellectual and emotional support over the years. This book would have never come to life without their precious expertise. Lastly, many thanks to our host family at the Bardo in Tunis who were generous, inclusive, and helpful during our stay, especially Anissa Zayar and her family. In France, I would like to thank the staff of the Archives Diplomatiques of Nantes, as well as the team of the médiathèque MMSH in Aix-en-Provence, especially Evelyne Disdier and Bérangère Clément, for their guidance and for granting permission to reproduce the photos from the Revault archives. I also would like to extend my thanks to the Department of Anthropology and the Samuel Jordan Center for Persian Studies at the University of California, Irvine, especially Victoria Bernal, Kim Fortune and Touraj Daryaee, for hosting me as a research affiliate while finessing this book manuscript.
Many friends have been remarkably supportive during this journey. I would like to thank Véronique, Marie, Laura, Sandrine, Fanny M., Aline, Fanny C., Jacqueline, Noura, Lucas, Sam, Yoni, Firas, and my dearest Emanuelle and Sandra, for their invaluable love across time and continents. Many thanks to my Australian family, especially Carla, Greg, Sofia and Vivienne, as well as the Betros and Pascoe families for providing love and good food to eat. Thank you, Susan and Robert Pascoe for your generosity and incredible support during this journey and over the years. In Switzerland, a hearty thank you to my dearest Papily, and Isabelle and Sylvain, for their love and encouragements, as well as ‘Les Rey’, an awesome family. Thank you to Maman and Chacha for their unconditional love and moral support and for believing in my projects, wherever they take me. This would not have been possible without you two. Last but not least, thank you to my dearest Stephen, Nina and Eliot, who fill my life with love, affection and laughter, all day, every day, unconditionally.