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Perspectives on Policy and Society in the Middle East

Mar. 28, 2008 – The University of Utah’s 2007-2008 Middle East Lecture Series concludes this April with three lectures that will examine varying perspectives on policy and society in the Middle East. Each lecture will take place at 4 p.m. in the Hinckley Caucus Room, 255 Orson Spencer Hall, and is free and open to the public.

April 2

Helena Cobban, author and contributing editor of Boston Review, will speak on her most recent book, Amnesty after Atrocity?: Healing Nations after Genocide and War Crimes and will address the question: “Israel & Palestine: One state, or two states, or what?”

Cobban is a veteran writer, researcher, and program organizer on global affairs. Her recent articles in the Boston Review include essays on Lebanese and Palestinian affairs, and post-genocide justice issues in Rwanda. She has worked as a journalist in the Middle East, including five years as a Beirut-based correspondent for The Christian Science Monitor and the Sunday Times of London. Cobban has held research fellowships at Harvard, Georgetown, and the Brookings Institution.

April 10

Sadiq Al-Azm, is a visiting professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University and professor emeritus of philosophy at the University of Damascus. Al-Azm will speak on Occidentalism.

In 1963, after studying at Yale University, Al-Azm taught at the American University of Beirut. His book, Self-Criticism After the Defeat, is perhaps his best known work, in which he gives an analysis of the Arab disillusionment after the Six Days War. Throughout his career, he has taught at the University of Damascus, Harvard, Princeton and the University of Hamburg, and was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

April 14

Benny Miller, associate professor and director of advanced studies at the University of Haifa, will present information from his latest book: States, Nations, and the Great Powers: The Sources of Regional War and Peace. It focuses on the effects of nationalism and the great powers on regional variations in war and peace both among different regions and also over time Рfrom the 19th to the 21st century.

In 2000-2002 Miller was a visiting professor at the Department of Political Science at Duke University and, before that, a tenured member of the Department of International Relations at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He received a Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley and was a research fellow at Harvard, MIT and Princeton.

The Middle East Lecture Series is organized by the Middle East Center at the University of Utah, in collaboration with the Office of the President, the senior vice president for academic affairs, the vice president for university relations, the College of Humanities, the College of Social and Behavioral Science, the Department of Political Science, and the Hinckley Institute of Politics.