Steering Committee: Susanna Drake (Religious Studies), J. Andrew Overman (Director; Classical Mediterranean and Middle East), James Laine (Religious Studies), Andrew Latham (Political Science), David Chioni Moore (International Studies), Khaldoun Samman (Sociology), Beth Severy-Hoven (Classical Mediterranean and Middle East), Joëlle Vitiello (French and Francophone Studies)
This concentration provides students with an opportunity to engage in the study of the Middle East and the broader Islamic world. Some of the objectives of the concentration include: developing a basic familiarity with the cultures and religions, politics and history, geography and economy of the Middle East and Islamic world; obtaining some understanding of the major methodological approaches involved in studying the Middle East and Islamic world; and gaining a deep appreciation of the social, political, cultural diversity and complexity of the Middle East and broader Islamic world. In this concentration, students will find ways to engage in difficult dialogues and tackle some of the major issues of the day and region. One will develop the capacity to engage thoughtfully and constructively in some of the more contentious issues affecting the region, which is a vital feature of this concentration. Students are strongly encouraged to learn at least one of the languages spoken by the people in the regions studied.
Given that students and faculty come from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, the concentration permits students to complete this concentration in conjunction with a wide array of majors/minors. The program promotes breadth by requiring that students complete courses (in several departments); it promotes depth by requiring a research paper, internship, civic engagement project or artistic work focused on a relevant topic.