Deren is a PhD candidate in the joint program in History and Middle Eastern Studies. Her research focuses on the Tanzimat Era (1839-1876) in the Ottoman Empire. She is particularly interested in the intellectual history of Ottoman and Turkish state-building, the political formation of borderland subjectiviteis, and competing scales and conceptions of sovereignty and belonging.
Deren obtained her MA from the New School for Social Research in 2019, where she received the Outstanding MA Student in Historical Studies Award. In 2016, she received her BA from Wesleyan University, where she studied in the College of Social Studies and wrote an award-winning honor thesis on urban development and political upheavals in contemporary Turkey