The Middle East looms large in the world with violence, displacement, terror, destruction, and human rights violations making headlines. Four renowned international scholars will go behind the scenes to bring us up to date on the present situation, the history and the future. They will also discuss how the United States is involved in the region and the lives of citizens of these countries.
October 26: Ussama Makdisi “Sectarianism and Coexistence in the Modern Middle East”
Ussama Makdisi is a professor of history and the first holder of the Arab-American Educational Foundation Chair in Arab Studies at Rice University. He is the author of Artillery of Heaven: American Missionaries and the Failed Conquest of the Middle East; Faith Misplaced: The Broken Promise of U.S.-Arab Relations, 1820-2001; and the forthcoming The Ecumenical Frame: Coexistence and Sectarianism in the Modern Middle East (University of California Press). Dr. Makdisi earned a PhD from Princeton University and a BA from Wesleyan University.
November 2: Nathan Citino “Envisioning the Arab Future: Modernization in U.S.-Arab Relations”
Nathan Citino, associate professor of history at Rice University, is author of From Arab Nationalism to OPEC: Eisenhower, King Sa’ud, and the Making of US-Saudi Relations. Dr. Citino has a PhD from Ohio State University and completed an Arab language program at the University of Chicago. He has served on the board of editors of the International Journal of Middle East Studies and as associate editor of Diplomatic History. His recent book, Envisioning the Arab Future: Modernization in US-Arab Relations, 1945-1967, was published by Cambridge University Press.
November 9: Abdel Razzaq Takriti “The Syrian Tragedy between Past and Present: Empires, Rulers, and Movements”
Professor Abdel Razzaq Takriti holds the Arab-American Educational Foundation Chair in Modern Arab History at the University of Houston. He is the author of Monsoon Revolution: Republicans, Sultans, and Empires in Oman (2016), and is the co-author and co-editor of the website The Palestinian Revolution (learnpalestine.politics.ox.ac.uk). Dr. Takriti holds a DPhil in Modern History from Oxford University and is a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.
November 16: Idean Salehyan “From Al-Qaeda to ISIS: Syria, Iraq, and the Future of the Middle East”
Idean Salehyan is an associate professor of political science at the University of Texas at Dallas. His research focuses on civil and international conflict, transnational security threats, and the political consequences of environmental scarcity. Author of Rebels without Borders: Transnational Insurgencies in World Politics (2009), Dr. Salehyan received BA degrees in political science and Third World Studies and a PhD in political science from the University of California, San Diego.