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Kamran Scot Aghaie, Chair CAL 528 | 204 W 21st St F9400 | Austin, TX 78712-1029 • 512-471-3881

Spring 2006

MES 301L • Introduction to Middel Eastern Studies: ADJ/CHG Mod Time

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
41055 TTh
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
UTC 3.112

Course Description

This survey course is an introduction to the history, politics, and societies of the modern Middle East. Beginning with general background on the region in the pre-modern period, it reviews the major transformations of the last two centuries, with a focus on the domestic, regional and international forces that have shaped Middle Eastern realities during the twentieth century. The lectures and readings cover both the specific developments in the various Middle Eastern countries and broader regional issues shaping the contemporary Middle East, including the patterns of authoritarian rule, the challenges of social and economic development, the rise and impact of Islamic political movements, the dynamics of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the politics of oil, and the role of the United States in the region.

Grading Policy

First midterm exam - 25%; second midterm exam - 25%; final exam - 40%; short paper - 10%.


William Cleveland, A History of the Modern Middle East, 3rd edition, 2004. R. Stephen Humphreys, Between Memory and Desire: The Middle East in a Troubled Age (selections).


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