10510 Youth, Education and Politics in the Middle East 1

Credits: 6 advanced credits in Modern History or in History of the Middle East or in Social Sciences - General

Prerequisites: 36 credits, including one course in History of the Middle East or in Modern History or in Modern History of the Jewish People. Students must also fulfill all English requirements and take bibliographic instruction in the Library.

Author: Haggai Erlich

The course focuses on the combined development of two dimensions in the modernization of the Middle East in the modern age. The first the development of education, mainly high school and higher education, in the major countries of the region from the beginning of the 19th century to the present. Secular-western educational frameworks (fundamentally different from traditional Islamic education) were adopted by the majority of political leaders, and they in turn created far-reaching changes in society, economy, culture and politics. The second dimension pertains to the role of educated youth the product of the processes of change in education in the development of the various stages of politics throughout all periods from the outset of the modern age. Educated youth, and the professional middle class it created, was one of the primary catalysts in the formation of political dynamics as well as new national identities, and constituted a group which acted to reestablish patterns of political Islam. The course discusses these two dimensions simultaneously, examining the history of Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and the Arabs of Palestine from an innovative point of view.

Participation in two of the tutorial sessions is mandatory.


1Students may write a seminar paper in this course, although it is not required.