Institute for Middle East Studies
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IMES in the News
IMES Faculty Associate Judith Yaphe interviewed Vali Nasr about his new book, The Dispensable Nation, for C-SPan2's BookTV. The book describes the politics of making Af-Pak policy from 2009-2011, when Nasr was a special assistant to Ambassador Richard Holbrooke. Nasr argues for the U.S. to re-engage in the Middle East, rather than pivot to Asia, and sees China as the ultimate enemy challenging U.S. pre-eminence in the region. To watch the program, please click here.
IMES Faculty Associate Nathan Brown published an article on April 17th entitled "Requiem for Fayyadism" for Foreign Policy. He also published a Carnegie paper on April 23 called "Islam and Politics in the New Egypt."
Professor Brown has received a Guggenheim Award from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation which awards fellowships to assist research. His project, tentatively entitled "Arguing the Islamic Shari'a after the Rebirth of Arab Politics," is aimed at probing how arguments are made, authority is achieved, and outcomes are shaped in an environment where there is increasingly cacophonous public contestatation over religious issues. Congratulations, Professor Brown!
IMES has received a $4 million gift from the Amir of Kuwait, His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. The gift contributes to the endowment of the Institute for Middle East Studies, supporting the Institute's academic and research activities. The gift also supports the Gelman Library's Middle East and North Africa Research Center. To read the GW Today article discussing the contribution, please click here.
IMES Faculty Associate Nathan Brown published an article on March 27th entitled "Egypt's Constitution Swings Into Action" for Foreign Policy's Middle East Channel. Additionally, Professor Brown and Said Arjomand are the editors of The Rule of Law, Islam, and Constitutional Politics in Egypt and Iran which was published by SUNY Press in March, and will be released in April 2013.
Also, Professor Brown was a plenary speaker on "Islamists in Power" at the Economic Research Forum's 19th annual conference - Economic Development and the Rise of the Islamist Parties - in Kuwait, March 3-5.
IMES alumnus Jared Markland was interviewed by Al Alam - an Arabic language news network - on the topic of arming the Syrian opposition. To watch a video of the interview, please click here (please note that the interview is entirely in Arabic). Great work, Jared!
IMES Faculty Associate Murhaf Jouejati was interviewed on February 27th for an article in the Los Angeles Times entitled "Kerry confronts clashing interests in Syria, Iran and Russia." Professor Jouejati also was quoted in an article in U.S. News & World Report entitled "Why Would Assad Gas His Own People?" which was published on March 20th.
IMES Faculty Associate Pardis Minuchehr was awarded the Teacher/Student combination Startalk grant for the Persian program in the summer. This grant will allow the program to conduct a teacher's professional development program, and an immersion Persian program for undergraduate students on campus. Professor Minuchehr is the principal investigator on the grant.
IMES Faculty Associate Edward Gnehm was interviewed on March 16th by the Italian language news agency Linkiesta for an article on the Syrian situation and particularly the Gulf Arab countries' strategy on the conflict.
IMES Faculty Associate Hossein Askari has two books that are set to be published in 2013: "Collaborative Colonialism: The Political Economy of Oil in the Persian Gulf" (New York: Palgrave Macmillan) - with a foreword by Robert E. Looney; and "Conflicts in the Persian Gulf: Origins and Evolution" (New York: Palgrave Macmillan) - with a foreword by Ahmad Ghoreishi. Additionally, Professor Askari did an interview entitled "The Middle East will blow up - the only question is when" which can be viewed here.
IMES alumna Stefanie Hausheer had an op-ed published in U.S. News & World Report entitled "Americans Must Do More to Welcome Saudi Scholarship Students." This piece was based on work that Stefanie did for her capstone project during her time in the Middle East Studies Program. Congratulations!
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The Institute for Middle East Studies is delighted to welcome Quinn Mecham to the Elliott School of International Affairs
Mecham was the Fall 2012 Visiting Scholar, and is Visiting Assistant Professor in Spring 2013.
About Quinn Mecham:
Middle East expert Quinn Mecham teaches courses on Comparative Politics, Middle Eastern Politics, Civil Conflict, and Political Islam. His primary research focuses on Islamic movements and the strategies and behavior of Islamist political parties.
Additionally, he has written on sectarian violence, civil conflict, authoritarianism, and state failure. He has done field research in Turkey (Fulbright, 2001-2002), Morocco, Senegal, France, Egypt, Indonesia, among other countries.
He was an Academy Scholar at Harvard University (2007-08), a visiting scholar at George Washington University (2009-10), and a member of the Policy Planning Staff of the U.S. Department of State (2009-10), focusing on the Arab Gulf, political Islam, and global religious affairs.
He is the author of From the Sacred to the State: Institutional Origins of Islamist Political Mobilization (under review), and the co-editor of a volume on Islamist political parties in Asia and the Middle East. In addition, he has written articles for Third World Quarterly, Middle Eastern Studies, MIT Center for International Studies, Project on Middle East Democracy, among many others.
Mecham graduated from Brigham Young University and received his master's and doctorate degrees from Stanford University.
He can be reached at email@example.com. Starting in January 2013, his office hours will be Monday, 2:00-5:00pm, in office 512I.
IMES welcomes new faculty member
The Institute for Middle East Studies is excited to have Professor Attiya Ahmad on the IMES faculty team!
Attiya Ahmad is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at GW. She received her PhD in Cultural Anthropology at Duke University, MA degrees in Anthropology from Duke University and the University of Toronto, and a BA Hons in International Development Studies from the University of Toronto. In 2009-2010 she was a postdoctoral fellow at Georgetown University's Center for International and Regional Studies in Doha, Qatar. Prior to joining GWU, Professor Ahmad taught at Wesleyan University, and worked with social justice movements and NGOs in Toronto, Pakistan and Palestine. She has conducted extensive fieldwork in the Gulf Cooperation Council States, South Asia, the Middle East and more recently, Central Asia.
Prof. Ahmad's monograph 'Limits of Conversation: Islamic Da'wa, Domestic Work and South Asian Foreign Resident Women in Kuwait,' currently under revision for publication, is based on 29 months of ethnographic fieldwork conducted in Kuwait, Pakistan and Nepal. Her research focuses on female South Asian migrant domestic worker in Kuwait City who are converting to Islam and the controversies that surround their newfound pieties. By tracing the experiences of these women, most notably their work within Kuwaiti households and their participation in classes organized by Kuwait's Islamic da'wa movement, her research foregrounds the importance of the household as a site through which globalizing Islamic movements and the increasing feminization of transnational labor migration in the region are reshaping subjectivities, social belonging and political possibilities in our contemporary world. Her work brings together scholarship on transnationalism, globalization and cosmopolitanism; diaspora and migration studies; religion, secularism, and ethics; Islamic studies; economic and anthropology and political economy; Middle East and South Asia studies; and an array of feminist, marxist and critical theories reexamining the household as a site of biopolitics, affective and immaterial labor, and the production and reproduction of gendered subjects.
Aramex Partnership Continues to Grow
Established in 2011, The Aramex Student Fund is an Elliott School of International Affairs program that combines language training and social entrepreneurship. Provided by a generous gift of $50,000 donated by Aramex International, a global transportation and logistics services company, this fund allows students to study Arabic abroad while simultaneously interning for a local NGO. Through their internship, students are able to invest in the development of their host country and support the activities of local NGOs, help them build relationships and gain experience in the NGO sector, and give them a deeper exposure to the local culture beyond the academic realm. Each grantee is funded up to $3000 to defray tuition, housing, and food costs.This summer, 8 students are participating in the program, traveling to Egypt, Jordan and the West Bank.
In its inaugural year, during the summer of 2011, the program had 7 Aramex/GW students who went to Lebanon, the West Bank and Jordan. They reported a tremendously positive experience. One student, who interned in Jordan, calls the Aramex program a "life-changing opportunity." Another student volunteered with the Sustainable Democracy Center in Beirut while studying at the Lebanese American University, and assisted with their youth club activities. Another student spent some 80 hours teaching English in Nablus and Ramallah through the Sharek Youth Forum while studying Arabic at Birzeit University. Yet another student, who interned with the Ruwwad Foundation in Amman, describes becoming close to many of the students and families she met there. She also learned a tremendous amount about the realities of sustainable development, incorporating her experience into an independent research project at the Elliott School. A selection of pictures from summer 2011 are below:
IMES Designated Title VI National Resource Center
The U.S. Department of Education has designated The Institute for Middle East Studies a Title VI National Resource Center, awarding IMES nearly $1 million over four years to enrich its programs in research and teaching on the Middle East.
The grant will enable IMES to build its Persian, Arabic and Turkish language programs, support faculty and student research, and offer a wider variety of events. It will provide funds to significantly expand the University's Middle East and North Africa Resource Center within Gelman Library. It will also help support the Project on Middle East Political Science, a major national network successfully launched last year to strengthen the impact of Middle East specialists on public discourse and the academic field. It will also allow GW to launch three innovative outreach initiatives, including an Iraq War veteran's outreach initiative, a journalist training initiative, and a K-12 teacher training initiative.
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POMEPS Event Series
"Of Empires and Citizens: Pro-American Democracy or No Democracy at All?"
A Conversation with Amaney Jamal
Please check back for the rescheduled date
Lindner Family Commons (Room 602) Elliott School of International Affairs
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