Radical Increments: Toward New Platforms of Engaging Iraqi Studies
Apr
24
Apr 25

Radical Increments: Toward New Platforms of Engaging Iraqi Studies

  • 203 Butler Library, Columbia University

As the rift between theory and application in the field of Iraqi studies has grown over the past three decades for political, social, economic and security reasons, the Conference seeks to create an informed space to address major intellectual and political issues pertinent to Iraq in a manner that bears practical utility. To that end, the Conference will bring together a number of scholars and researchers in the field of Iraqi studies as well as Iraqi policy makers, journalists and novelists, with the hope that this platform will help modify, extend, or reposition existing frameworks of knowledge to allow for new possibilities of application and action.

Conference Co-Organizers:
Muhsin al-Musawi, Columbia University
Yasmeen Hanoosh, Portland State

For more details click here.

Register by emailing Joscelyn Shawn Ganjhara Jurich at jsj10@columbia.edu.

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute, the Middle East, South Asian and African Studies Department (MESAAS), Butler Library, and al-Shaybani Foundation.

Edge of Arabia: A Free Way
Apr
23
6:00 pm18:00

Edge of Arabia: A Free Way

  • Judith Lee Stronach Center, Schermerhorn Hall (8th Floor), Columbia University

Stephen Stapleton (Artist, Co-Founder and Director), Husam Al-Sayed (Filmmaker & Founder of Telfaz11) and Ava Ansari (Artist and Edge of Arabia Associate Curator and US Tour Manager) will join Professor Moneera Al-Ghadeer (Visiting Professor, Columbia Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies) in conversation to discuss the mission and conceptual framework of Edge of Arabia's three- year tour across the United States. In 2013, Edge of Arabia initiated an ongoing tour across the United States in partnership with Art Jameel, with the intention to investigate, communicate and archive alternative stories and histories connecting the Middle East and the United States, and to cultivate direct encounters on a grassroots level across the physical and psychological borders in between and across these regions.

For more information, please visit Edge of Arabia's website at http://edgeofarabia.com.

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute and organized by Vivian Chui. 

The Tragedy of the Egyptian Revolution
Apr
14
6:00 pm18:00

The Tragedy of the Egyptian Revolution

  • 707 International Affairs Building, Columbia University

Informed by many years of studying Egypt's modern history and reflecting on his own personal experience in Tahrir, Khaled Fahmy will be lecturing about the Tragedy of Egypt's Revolution.

Teaching Religion: Pedagogy, Transmission, and Technology
Mar
27
8:00 am08:00

Teaching Religion: Pedagogy, Transmission, and Technology

  • World Room (3rd Floor), Columbia School of Journalism

Columbia University Religion Department Graduate Student Conference

Pedagogy, transmission, and technology transform the teaching of religion by shaping the movement of ideas. Often understood as distinct categories, pedagogy, transmission, and technology substantially overlap in discussions of how, why, and by what means religion is taught. By bringing to light both how religions themselves are so often pedagogical in nature and the ways the study of religion poses particular pedagogical problems, this conference aims to challenge popular modes of teaching religion. In this conference we will discuss fundamental questions of how religion can be studied and taught, how religious knowledge can be created and transmitted, and how new technologies enable new ways of imagining religion. By putting into conversation teachers of religion from both within and outside religious communities, this conference seeks to not only cultivate interdisciplinary conversation, but also transgress the boundaries between religion and its secular study.

For more information click here.

Sponsored by the Sponsored by the Department of Religion, the Institute for Religion, Culture, and Public Life, the Graduate Student Advisory Council, and the Middle East Institute. 

Permission to Narrate: Three Nights of Palestinian Plays
Mar
25
Mar 27

Permission to Narrate: Three Nights of Palestinian Plays

  • Earl Hall Theater, Columbia University

The Center for Palestine Studies invites you to staged readings of three plays that embody the contemporary Palestinian playwright's use of art to resist historical, political and geographic erasures.
 

The Other Saudies: Shiism, Dissent and Sectarianism
Mar
9
12:30 pm12:30

The Other Saudies: Shiism, Dissent and Sectarianism

  • 208 Knox Hall, Columbia University


Toby Matthiesen
Author and Research Fellow
Oxford University

Join us for a lecture by APSA award winning author, Toby Matthiesen, on his new book, The Other Saudis: Schiism, Dissent and Sectarianism. Here, he traces the politics of the Shia in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia from the nineteenth century until the present day. Using little-known Arabic sources, extensive fieldwork in Saudi Arabia and interviews with key activists, Matthiesen outlines the difficult experiences of being Shia in a Wahhabi state, and casts new light on how the Shia have mobilized politically to change their position.

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute, the Institute for Religion, Culture and Public Life, and The Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies 

Film Screening: The Other Town - Why Do Nations Clash?
Feb
26
8:00 pm20:00

Film Screening: The Other Town - Why Do Nations Clash?

  • 501 Schermerhorn Hall, Columbia University

With Filmmaker Nefin Dinç.

Introduction by Christine Philliou
Associate Professor at the Department of History, Columbia University

"The Other Town" is a documentary film about Turks and Greeks and the source of stereotypes, misunderstandings and prejudices against the "Other." It is about how the stereotypes and misunderstandings are perpetuated in education in a broader sense in Greece and Turkey countries. In this film, the filmmakers have collaborated with the writer Hercules Millas to see where these prejudices are still coming from even though the last war between the two nations took place about a 100 years ago. They filmed the national celebrations, religious ceremonies and history lessons in both countries throughout a year to find an answer to this question.

The film has won the "Audience Award" at Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival and the "Best Historical Documentary" at Greek Film Festival, Chicago.

To find more information on the film, and watch the trailer, click here.

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute, the Program in Hellenic Studies, and the Harriman Institute 

"Scratching on things I could disavow: From the Louvre's Department des Arts de l'Islam"
Feb
26
6:00 pm18:00

"Scratching on things I could disavow: From the Louvre's Department des Arts de l'Islam"

  • 612 Schermerhorn Hall, Columbia University

Walid Raad (Cooper Union)

This lecture is part of a series called "'Islamic' Art: Disrupting Unity and Discerning Ruptures," which addresses the historiography of the field "Islamic Art" by scoring the particular moments of ruptures that fractured its foundation.

Organized by Avinoam Shalem, Riggio Professor of the History of the Arts of Islam, Department of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University

For more information visit, click here.

Sponsored by the Department of Art History and Archaeology in collaboration with the Middle East Institute. 

Palestine & Law Lecture Series
Feb
26
4:30 pm16:30

Palestine & Law Lecture Series

  • 105 Jerome Greene Hall, Columbia Law School

Attorney Hassan Jabareen, founder and director of Adalah, the Legal Center for Minority Rights in Israel, will give a talk on the legal dimensions of Palestinian citizen's political participation in the 2015 Israeli elections.

Respondent: Darryl Li, Associate Research Scholar at Yale University, PhD in Anthropology from Harvard University and JD from Yale.

Moderated by Katherine Franke, Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law; Director, Center for Gender and Sexuality Law.

For more information click here.

Sponsored by the Center for Palestine Studies, Center for Gender and Sexuality, and the Middle East Institute. 

IMAC Brownbag Series with Fatima El-Assawi
Feb
26
12:45 pm12:45

IMAC Brownbag Series with Fatima El-Assawi

  • 1302 International Affairs Building, Columbia University

Fatima El-Issawi is a research fellow at the LSE (London School of Economics) Middle East Centre.

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute and IMAC (International Media, Advocacy and Communications). 

What Went Wrong in Libya?: A Look at Key Actors, Events, and the International Community's Role in Libya's Downward Spiral
Feb
24
4:15 pm16:15

What Went Wrong in Libya?: A Look at Key Actors, Events, and the International Community's Role in Libya's Downward Spiral

  • 1302 International Affairs Building, Columbia University

With Hanan Salah, Libya Researcher, Human Rights Watch.

moderated by Dipali Mukhopadhyay, Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs, SIPA.

About the speaker: Hanan Salah, Libya researcher in the Middle East and North Africa division, investigates human rights abuses in Libya. She produces detailed reports, news releases, and op-eds based on her findings and conducts local and international advocacy. Before joining Human Rights Watch, Salah worked as protection team leader for western Libya at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), supervising a team of delegates and visiting scores of detention facilities. Prior to working in Libya, she was the ICRC detention team leader in Algeria and a delegate in Chad and Iraq. She has also served as the regional manager for the Middle East and North Africa at Hilfswerk, an Austrian humanitarian organization. Salah holds a Master's degree from Vienna University in Economics and Business Administration. She is a native speaker of Arabic and German and also fluent in English and French.

Sponsored by the Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War & Peace Studies and Middle East Institute. 

"Ex-Libris: Chronicles of Theft, Preservation, and Appropriating at the Jewish National Library - The Case of the Palestinian and Yemenite Looted Books" - CANCELED
Feb
23
12:00 pm12:00

"Ex-Libris: Chronicles of Theft, Preservation, and Appropriating at the Jewish National Library - The Case of the Palestinian and Yemenite Looted Books" - CANCELED

  • 208 Knox Hall, Columbia University


Gish Amit, Mandel Leadership Institute (Jerusalem).

Gish Amit has been involved in non-formal education for some twenty years. He taught cinema and literature at the Arab Democratic School in Jaffa, and lectured in philosophy and critical theory at Tel-Aviv University and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Amit is a co-author (with Gadi Avidan and Chen Lampert) of The Unheard Voice: A Different View on Children at Schools (in Hebrew, HaKibbutz HaMeuchad, 2005), and author of Ex-Libris: the Jewish National and University Library 1945-1955 (in Hebrew, Van Leer Jerusalem Institute). Amit holds a BA and an MA from Tel-Aviv University in philosophy and literature, and a doctorate from the Hebrew literature department of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. He was recently a post-doctoral fellow at "The Middle East in Europe" program in Berlin.

During the 1948 war, the staff of the Jewish National and University Library at the Hebrew University collected some 30,000 books, manuscripts and newspapers that were left behind by the Palestinian residents of western Jerusalem. About 6,000 of those book were "loaned" to the National Library's Eastern Studies Department. Furthermore, the Custodian of Absentee Property gathered some 40,000-50,000 books from the cities of Jaffa, Haifa, Tiberias, Nazareth and other places.

Many Jews from Yemen who arrived in the fledgling state of Israel in the late 1940s and early 1950s brought with them hand-written books, scrolls, and other precious possessions. On arrival they were asked to deposit these objects with state officials who promised that their belongings would be returned. Most of these artifacts were subsequently appropriated by the state via the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and its library. Owners were later told that the artifacts had unaccountably disappeared or been destroyed by fire; still later some of these objects were put up for sale by book dealers; some continue to appear in unlikely places.

The untold story of the fate of both Palestinian and Yemenite 'abandoned' books will be discussed in this lecture. Both cases demonstrate how occupation and colonization is not limited to the taking over of physical space, but also to the occupation and control of cultural spaces.


Co-sponsored by the Middle East Institute, the Department of Art History and Archaeology, and the Institute for Religion, Culture and Public Life at Columbia University. 

Feb
13
4:00 pm16:00

The Place of Islamic Literature and Though in the Humanities Curriculum

  • 509 Knox Hall, Columbia University

Franklin Lewis, Associate Professor of Persian, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago.

Veli N. Yashin, PhD Candidate, Dept. of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies, Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, Columbia University.

What is the place of Islamic literature and thought in the American university, here and now? Is there an "Islamic humanities"? Does it have a place within the general humanities curriculum? If so what can be said about this place from within the critical space of humanities today? This panel discussion brings together both prominent and emerging scholars to debate and reconceive the larger role of "Islamic Humanities" within the general humanities. In addition to responding to the urgency of revising the teaching of "major texts" as part of the departmental major, then, this panel discussion begins to re-envision the role of the next generation of scholars in continuing the tradition of the "Core" at Columbia and beyond, availing itself of the European, American, and the West-Asian traditions. In this sense, the event also addresses the more general question: how to teach "non-Western" textual traditions in the American university?

Co-sponsored by the Middle East Institute, Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Teaching Center. 

Foreign Policy as an Identity Marker: Understanding Turkey's De-Alignment from the EU
Feb
12
6:00 pm18:00

Foreign Policy as an Identity Marker: Understanding Turkey's De-Alignment from the EU

  • 707 International Affairs Building, Columbia University


Senem Aydin-Düzgit, Associate Professor of International Relations, Istanbul Bilgi University

This talk begins with the argument that despite the burgeoning literature on Turkish foreign policy, there has been little theoretically informed study on the identity-related implications of Turkish foreign policy in the Davutoglu era. Prof. Aydin-Düzgit argues that discourses on key events and issues in Turkish foreign policy enable the construction of a national identity, which has implications for policies at the domestic level as well as for Turkey's relations with the European Union.

Senem Aydin-Düzgit is an Associate Professor and Jean Monnet Chair in the Department of International Relations at Istanbul Bilgi University. Her main research interests include EU enlargement, EU-Turkey relations, discourse studies, politics of identity and democratization. She is the author of Constructions of European Identity: Debates and Discourses on Turkey and the EU (Palgrave, 2013).

Register here.

Co-sponsored by the European Institute and the Middle East Institute. 

A Poetics of Conversion: Crossing and Transgressing Religious Boundaries in Persian Literature
Feb
12
12:30 pm12:30

A Poetics of Conversion: Crossing and Transgressing Religious Boundaries in Persian Literature

  • 208 Knox Hall, Columbia University

Franklin Lewis, Associate Professor of Persian, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago

Professor Franklin Lewis is an Associate Professor of Persian Language and Literature in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago and Deputy Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Chicago. He teaches classes on Persian language and literature, Islamic thought, Sufism, Baha'i Studies, translation studies, and Middle Eastern cinema.

Professor Lewis studied at U.C. Berkeley and did his graduate work in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago. His dissertation on the life and works of the 12th-century mystical poet Sana'i, and the establishment of the ghazal genre in Persian literature, won the Foundation of Iranian Studies best dissertation prize in 1995. Prof. Lewis previously taught Persian a tEmory University, in the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies. He founded Adabiyat, an international discussion forum on the literatures of the Islamic World (including Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Urdu) and is former President of the American Institute of Iranian Studies.

Introduction by Hossein Kamaly, Assistant Professor of Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures, Barnard College of Columbia University

Sponsored by the Middle East Institute. 

Why Prayer? A Conference on New Directions in the Study of Prayer
Feb
6
Feb 7

Why Prayer? A Conference on New Directions in the Study of Prayer

  • Italian Academy, Columbia University

What can the study of prayer tell us about social life, religious institutions and practices, ethical self-formation, and our concepts of communication, both shared and unique? The Social Science Research Council's Program on Religion and the Public Sphere announces Why Prayer?

A Conference on New Directions in the Study of Prayer, a two-day gathering that will showcase the work of over 30 scholars and journalists who have explored these questions and more.

Please join us February 6-7, 2015, for panels and presentations on topics including religious technologies, embodiment, material culture, language, politics, and the mind. Beginning Friday afternoon, the conference will also feature the Prayer Expo-a pop-up installation of multi-media presentations and material objects that call attention to the myriad representations of prayer shaping discourse and practice. On Saturday, two plenary events will highlight the multiple registers of engagement occasioned by new, transdisciplinary research on the practice of prayer.

Presented by the Social Science Research Council, Program on Religion and the Public Sphere, and the following Columbia University co-sponsors: the Institute for Religion, Culture, and Public Life (IRCPL); the Middle East Institute; the department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies (MESAAS); and the departments Anthropology and Psychology.

For conference programs and detailed information visit the Social Science Research Council, Program on Religion and the Public Sphere.

REGISTER NOW

"How Modern was made 'Islamic': Recruiting a category for late 20th-century architecture in the Middle East"
Jan
29
6:00 pm18:00

"How Modern was made 'Islamic': Recruiting a category for late 20th-century architecture in the Middle East"

  • 612 Schermherhorn Hall, Columbia University


Esra Akcan, Associate Professor, Department of Architecture, Cornell University

This lecture is part of a series called "'Islamic' Art: Disrupting Unity and Discerning Ruptures," which addresses the historiography of the field "Islamic Art" by scoring the particular moments of ruptures that fractured its foundation.

Organized by Avinoam Shalem, Riggio Professor of the History of the Arts of Islam, Department of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University

For more information visit, click here.

Sponsored by the Department of Art History and Archaeology in collaboration with the Middle East Institute. 

Writing Across Borders and Languages
Jan
22
6:00 pm18:00

Writing Across Borders and Languages

  • East Gallery, Buell Hall, Columbia University

Writing across Borders and Languages
A conversation with Italian-Algerian Author Amara Lakhous.

Author joined by Madeleine Dobie, Elizabeth Leake, and Pier Mattia Tommasino.

Born in Algiers in 1970, Amara Lakhous departed for Italy during the violence that ravaged Algeria in the 1990s. His critically acclaimed novels in Arabic and Italian include Clash of Civilizations over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio (2010), Divorce Islamic Style (2012) and Dispute over a Very Italian Piglet (2014). Using humor to explore the encounter of cultures, religions and languages, Lakhous's work explores the experience of exile and the dynamics of migration in the contemporary Mediterranean. His novels have won major literary prizes, including Premio Flaiano per la narrativa in 2006 and Algeria's most prestigious literary award, the Prix des libraires algériens in 2008. Clash of Civilizations over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio has been adopted by Cornell University as the New Student Reading Project text for 2014.

He will discuss his novels, the practice of bilingual writing and translation, literary culture in Algeria and Italy, and the social and political framework of contemporary migration, with Columbia Professors Madeleine Dobie (French and Comparative Literature), Elizabeth Leake (Italian) and Pier Mattia Tommasino (Italian).

Co-sponsored by the Columbia Maison Française, Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Institute of African Studies, Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, European Institute, Middle East Institute, Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies and Department of Italian.