Middle East/Islamicate Worlds Studies
About the Major
The Middle East/Islamicate Worlds Studies curriculum tries to encompass the overlapping, but not identical, cultural complexities of the Middle East, as well as other areas of the world where Islam has had a significant presence historically. The interdisciplinary program focuses on arts and architecture, family structures, literature, and ethical practices, such as Islamic finance, that are strongly influenced and shaped by Islam but are not necessarily part of the religion.
A Sampling of Courses
Islamic History and Culture
An interdisciplinary exploration of Muslim societies from the 7th century to the present. Beginning with the origins of Islam, the history of the Quran, and the biography of the Prophet, the course examines how questions of political authority, religious practice, and cultural exchange were navigated as the Muslim community developed. We read texts from Islam’s rich literary heritage and pay close attention to the ways in which the Muslim past continues to animate contemporary debates, practices, and imagination.
Explore these select courses:
The course is a survey of modern Arabic narrative fiction and film by well-known authors and filmmakers from countries in Middle East, including, but not limited to, Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Oman, Libya, Morocco and spanning the late 19th through early 21st centuries. Students learn about the Arabic-speaking people through their cultural, social, economic, and political struggles in the modern period, and explore questions relating to how they define themselves in a highly globalized world.
Introduction of North African diaspora in France through texts in translation. The course analyzes the roots of gender and religion-based stereotypes as they affect the Muslim population. It includes considerations on the History of North-African immigration in France; the aftermath of the French-Algerian War, as well as French secularism. Readings include novels and critical texts, online research, and films focused on the immigrant experience in France. Taught in English. No knowledge of Arabic required.
Meet Our Faculty
Director, Associate Professor of Asian Studies
archaeological history of South Asian religions, especially Buddhist and Hindu traditions; research in themes of inter-religious dynamics, syncretism and religious transformation; colonialism and reconfigurations of sacred centers; and religion and water management in the Buddhist and Hindu traditions
Assistant Professor of Asian Studies
History of Islam in South Asia, specializing in Sultanate and Mughal India; Muslim devotional traditions, material culture, and gender and sexuality; history of pre-modern Iran and Persian culture
Associate Professor of French
contemporary French and Francophone literature, culture, and film; literature and cinema of immigration; transnational immigrant identities in France