Crisis: Middle East and North Africa

Several programs at the Council have extensive involvement with the Middle East, North Africa and Egypt in particular. Click on the links to the right for a dynamically evolving set of analyses of the current crisis in the Middle East and North Africa.

Islamic Traditions and Muslim Societies in World Contexts

The Council runs a program on promoting public engagement by academic researchers with expertise on Islamic traditions and Muslim societies.  This program supports Foreign Policy.com's Middle East Channel which in a single year has established itself as the premiere online site for informed analysis of the politics of the Middle East. The Middle East Channel reaches an audience of millions and is read widely throughout the Washington policy community and the specialist community. Over the last year it has provided a venue for the arguments and ideas of more than 100 academic specialists on the Middle East and has demonstrably increased their impact on American policy debates about the Middle East. Their recent coverage of events in Egypt and Tunisia has been both prescient and deeply knowledgeable.  Other program grantees have been providing first-rate coverage as well (find links to the right).

The Immanent Frame

Contributors to The Immanent Frame blog write on many aspects of religion and the public sphere. In this set of posts they reflect on the events, forces, and connections that have led to the protests in Egypt, parse the religious and secular imaginations at work on the streets of Egyptian cities, and consider how the current uprising may shape the future political landscape.

The International Dissertation Research Fellowship (IDRF)

IDRF supports the next generation of scholars in the humanities and social sciences pursuing research that advances knowledge about non-U.S. cultures and societies. Since its inception in 1997, the IDRF program has funded research spanning the globe. A number of IDRF Fellows have done research in Egypt, live(d) there, and in some cases were born and raised there. Some of their posts are available to the right.

Reconceptualizing Public Spheres in the Middle East and North Africa

The book coming out of this five year project, Publics, Politics and Participation: Locating the Public Sphere in the Middle East and North Africa (Seteney Shami, ed.), demonstrates how conflict and resistance are generative forces in public discourse.  Recent developments in Tunisia and Egypt have borne out some of the central conclusions of this volume. Read more.

Crisis Coverage

"The suspicious revolution: an interview with Talal Asad" at The Immanent Frame

Marc Lynch on the continued violence in Syria for The Middle East Channel (SSRC Grantee)

SSRC-IDRF Fellow Aaron Jakes on "The specter of Egypt's colonial interior"

2009 SSRC-IDRF Fellow Kevan Harris asks "Why Workers Aren't Joining the Protests" in Iran for Time Magazine

"Missed Opportunities Thwart Progress on U.S.-Iran Relations" featuring 2009 SSRC-IDRF Fellow Kevan Harris

Seyla Benhabib on “The Arab Spring” in the Public Sphere Formation Essay Series

Lisa Anderson, former Chair of SSRC Board of Directors, on "Scores to Settle" in Libya

Statement by the Forum of Independent Human Rights Organizations at the website for the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights

Read in-depth coverage of the developments in Egypt at the Middle East Channel (SSRC Grantee) of ForeignPolicy.com

PBS interviews Marc Lynch of George Washington University (SSRC Grantee)

"Arab media revolution spreading change" by Lawrence Pintak of Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University (SSRC Grantee)

VIDEO BLOG: Ussama Makdisi and Stephen Kinzer discuss the Tunisian revolution

Commentators tout "Twitter revolutions," but SSRC President Craig Calhoun cautions about the complexity of Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Internet

The Immanent Frame on Egypt

Selections from Publics, Politics and Participation: Locating the Public Sphere in the Middle East and North Africa (Seteney Shami, ed.)

Fellows' Essays

"I Do Not Fear from this Uprising but I Fear for It" by Omar Cheta

"Breaking the Fear Barrier of Mubarak’s Regime" by Mohamed Elshahed

"More Than A Political Revolution" by Samantha Iyer

Published on: Tuesday, February 22, 2011