Mustafa Yavas is interested in political sociology, particularly in the areas of class, religion, social movements, and social networks. His previous research has revolved around various forms and manifestations of social closures and cleavages, including income-based residential segregation, homophily in social networks, and collective identity formation processes.
In his recent research, he has studied an emerging social movement that he calls ‘left-wing Islamism’ which challenges the dichotomous boundaries of left and Islam in Turkey. He focuses on how the groups in this movement build and negotiate their collective identities. Drawing on his fieldwork and interviews with key movement intellectuals, he frames their collective identity building as boundary blurring and discusses the ways in which they navigate through the detrimental cleavage between left(-ists) and Islam(-ists) in Turkey.