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New Texts Out Now: Sheila Carapico, ed., Arabia Incognita: Dispatches from Yemen and the Gulf

Sheila Carapico, editor,  Arabia Incognita: Dispatches from Yemen and the Gulf. Charlottesville: Just World Books, 2015.  Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Sheila Carapico (SC): This book began as an activist political project, a form of protest against a cruel war. Colleagues at MERIP were thinking of compiling a simple PDF reader to help students and others understand the background to the military intervention in Yemen the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia called Operation Decisive Storm in late April 2015. Then Helena Cobban of Just World Books invited me to “curate” an edited volume. I devoted the summer of 2015 to reading thirty-five years’ worth of ...

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New Texts Out Now: Mazen Masri, The Dynamics of Exclusionary Constitutionalism: Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State

Mazen Masri, The Dynamics of Exclusionary Constitutionalism: Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State. London: Bloomsbury Professional, 2017. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Mazen Masri (MM): The question of the book–Israel’s definition as a Jewish and democratic state–is one that I have been preoccupied with since I took the constitutional law course in the first year of my law degree at the Hebrew University. I was struck by how this contradiction is explained away using liberal language. The arguments and the explanations presented a picture that did not match the lived experience of many people, myself included. My interest in this question became ...

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New Texts Out Now: Irene Gendzier, Dying to Forget: Oil, Power, Palestine, & the Foundations of US Policy in the Middle East

Irene Gendzier, Dying to Forget: Oil, Power, Palestine, & the Foundations of US Policy in the Middle East. New York: Columbia University Press, 2015. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Irene Gendzier (IG): The desire to make sense of US policy in the Middle East, and particularly, US policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a subject that is regularly on the mainstream agenda and just as regularly distorted. J: What topics, issues and literature does this book address? IG: This study addresses the formation of postwar US foreign policy in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East, with an emphasis on the intersection of political and ...

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New Texts Out Now: Mehammed Mack, Sexagon: Muslims, France, and the Sexualization of National Culture

Mehammed Amadeus Mack. Sexagon: Muslims, France, and the Sexualization of National Culture. New York: Fordham University Press, 2017. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Mehammed Mack (MM): I wrote this book out of frustration that was both of a personal and academic nature. As a Gender Studies researcher who investigates sexual alterity and homo-eroticism in the Arab diaspora, and more importantly, as a human being familiar with queer Arab spaces, I felt there were huge holes, as well as blatant mischaracterizations, in the Euro-American media portrait of Arab/Muslim men and women. They are always portrayed as either never queer, incapable of sexual ...

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New Texts Out Now: Toufoul Abou-Hodeib, A Taste for Home: The Modern Middle Class in Ottoman Beirut

Toufoul Abou-Hodeib, A Taste for Home: The Modern Middle Class in Ottoman Beirut. Stanford University Press, 2017. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Toufoul Abou-Hodeib (TAH): The book started with the idea of using extant homes as a material archive, which grew out of my experience as an architecture student and a practicing architect in Beirut in the 1990s and early 2000s. The frantic post-war reconstruction of Beirut in the 1990s was accompanied by a pace of deconstruction that literally transformed whole neighborhoods overnight, not least in and around the city center, where many of the residential buildings from the late Ottoman period were located. ...

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New Texts Out Now: Jens Hanssen and Max Weiss, eds. Arabic Thought Beyond the Liberal Age: Towards an Intellectual History of the Nahda

Jens Hanssen and Max Weiss, eds. Arabic Thought Beyond the Liberal Age: Towards an Intellectual History of the Nahda. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Jens Hanssen (JH): The partnership for this project with Max Weiss was born at a workshop in Chicago in April 2011. I had long anticipated the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Albert Hourani’s seminal Arabic Thought In the Liberal Age, 1798-1939. When I suggested the idea of a conference to reflect on the legacy of the book and the author, Max was immediately game. A year and a half later, three generations of Hourani students and their students met at ...

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New Texts Out Now: Henri Lauzière, The Making of Salafism: Islamic Reform in the Twentieth Century

Henri Lauzière, The Making of Salafism: Islamic Reform in the Twentieth Century. New York: Columbia University Press, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Henri Lauzière (HL): I wrote the book in an attempt to solve a nagging problem in Islamic intellectual history. For the last three decades or so, scholars who sought to define and tell the story of Salafism always faced something of a paradox. On the one hand, a lot of the secondary literature tells us that Salafism, or salafiyya, was a movement of Islamic modernism associated with Muslim reformers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries known for their rational and progressive views, such ...

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New Texts Out Now: Alia Malek, The Home That Was Our Country: A Memoir of Syria

Alia Malek, The Home That Was Our Country: A Memoir of Syria. New York City: Nation Books, 2017. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Alia Malek (AM): I’ve always wanted the opportunity to dive into my family’s history, specifically that of my great-grandfather and my grandmother, in order to better understand their lives against the backdrop of Syrian history. At the same time–like so many others–I have become increasingly distressed with what has happened in Syria (and what has been happening throughout the course of my life; I was born shortly after Hafez al Assad came to power). That distress has only been exacerbated by the way Syria is covered ...

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New Texts Out Now: Marwan M. Kraidy, The Naked Blogger of Cairo: Creative Insurgency in the Arab World

Marwan M. Kraidy, The Naked Blogger of Cairo: Creative Insurgency in the Arab World. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Marwan Kraidy (MK): I was inspired by a desire to grapple with enduring and fundamental issues of power and resistance, as well as an intense curiosity to come to terms with the Arab uprisings. I came of age in Lebanon during the so-called Arab satellite revolution and since then I have dedicated my professional life to understanding the overlap of media, politics, and culture in the Arab world, in comparative perspective. As the Arab uprisings began and touched the global imagination, my challenge ...

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New Texts Out Now: Karim Makdisi and Vijay Prashad, eds. Land of Blue Helmets: The United Nations in the Arab World

Karim Makdisi and Vijay Prashad, Land of Blue Helmets: The United Nations in the Arab World (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2016). Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Karim Makdisi (KM): This book was in the pipelines for a very long time! It began with my renewed interest in the politics of the UN following Israel’s 2006 war on Lebanon and Israel’s various Gaza wars. Before that I had been working at the UN regional commission for West Asia (ESCWA), based in Beirut. I had an inside view of how the UN was trying to deal with the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, George Bush’s threats to make the UN irrelevant, and most importantly then the ...

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New Texts Out Now: Jean Pierre Frey, Les voies erratiques de l'urbanisation. Etre architecte et devenir urbaniste en Afrique du Nord

[Couverture du livre aux Editions L'Harmattan]

A propos de : Jean-Pierre Frey, Les voies erratiques de l’urbanisation. Être architecte et devenir urbaniste en Afrique du Nord (Éditions L’Harmattan : Paris, 2016) Jadaliyya (J.) : Qu’est-ce qui vous a fait écrire ce livre? Jean-Pierre Frey (J.-P. F.) : Mes expériences d’enseignement et de montage de formations de troisième cycle pour permettre à des architectes de devenir docteurs et de s’engager pleinement dans des carrières d’enseignants du supérieur. C’est à l’occasion de mon expérience marocaine et grâce à la collaboration de l’un de mes anciens étudiants, Hakim Cherkaoui, actuellement directeur de la nouvelle école d’architecture de ...

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New Texts Out Now: Gilbert Achcar, Morbid Symptoms: Relapse in the Arab Uprising

Gilbert Achcar, Morbid Symptoms: Relapse in the Arab Uprising (Stanford: Stanford University Press and London: Saqi, 2016). Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Gilbert Achcar (GA): Two reasons: one general and one practical. The general reason is the need to assess the new counter-revolutionary phase in the Arab upheaval, which started in 2013. Since early on, I have been describing what began in December 2010 in Tunisia and spread to the whole Arab-speaking region in 2011 as a “long-term revolutionary process” that will necessarily go through a succession of contrasting phases. My previous book, The People Want: A Radical Exploration of the Arab ...

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New Texts Out Now: Hannes Baumann, Citizen Hariri: Lebanon's Neoliberal Reconstruction

Hannes Baumann, Citizen Hariri: Lebanon’s Neoliberal Reconstruction. Hurst: London, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Hannes Bauman (HB): On 14 February 2005 I was preparing my PhD proposal in the library of IFEAD, the French research institute in Damascus. During a break I noticed that people were huddling around a portable TV in the lobby, transmitting grainy images of a bomb explosion. It was the Beirut blast that killed former billionaire-prime minister Rafiq Hariri. A month ...

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New Texts Out Now: Michèle Jolé, Histoire turque de l’Institut d’urbanisme de Paris. Des étudiants de 1919 à 1969

A propos de : Michèle Jolé, Histoire turque de l’Institut d’urbanisme de Paris. Des étudiants de 1919 à 1969 (Institut français d’études anatoliennes/ Openeditionbook: Istanbul, 2017) Jadaliyya (J.) : Qu’est-ce qui vous a fait écrire ce livre? Michèle Jolé (M.J.): La question est particulièrement pertinente. Je m’y suis d’ailleurs, longuement  et sans doute avec complaisance, arrêtée dans le premier chapitre de ce livre. On peut y voir un besoin de légitimer cette aventure, hors de mes champs ...

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New Texts Out Now: Ahmad Dallal, The Political Theology of ISIS: Prophets, Messiahs, and "the Extinction of the Grayzone"

Ahmad Dallal, The Political Theology of ISIS: Prophets, Messiahs, & "the Extinction of the Grayzone”. Washington DC: Tadween Publishing, 2017.  Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Ahmad Dallal (AD): Much has been written about ISIS. Most studies address specific aspects of the movement’s activities, but fall short of identifying the overall ISIS project that is used to homogenize and integrate the diverse constituencies targeted by ISIS. In this essay I try to identify the ...

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New Texts Out Now: Sami Hermez, War is Coming: Between Past and Future Violence in Lebanon

Sami Hermez, War is Coming: Between Past and Future Violence in Lebanon. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2017. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Sami Hermez (SH): I wrote this book because I felt there was a story that needed to be told of how people in states of protracted conflict live their lives with the specter of war continually hovering in the background, akin to the sounds of Beirut traffic. The potentiality of a coming war during my research in Lebanon moved in ...

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New Texts Out Now: Behrooz Ghamari, Remembering Akbar: Inside the Iranian Revolution

Behrooz Ghamari, Remembering Akbar: Inside the Iranian Revolution. New York: OR Books, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Behrooz Ghamari: (BG): Originally, I did not conceive this as a book. Every New Year’s Eve I began writing little vignettes and character portraits about my years as a political prisoner in Iran. I was released from prison on New Year’s Eve of 1985, so that was the significance of the day for me. For one day every year I removed myself from the routines of everyday ...

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New Texts Out Now: Erik Freas, Muslim-Christian Relations in Late-Ottoman Palestine: Where Nationalism and Religion Intersect

Erik Freas, Muslim-Christian Relations in Late-Ottoman Palestine: Where Nationalism and Religion Intersect. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Erik Freas (EF): The greater part of my research on Muslim-Christian relations in Palestine has, until now, focused primarily on the British mandatory period. Nonetheless, while the creation of the mandatory regimes following the collapse of the Ottoman Empire marks an obvious starting point for relating the history ...

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New Texts Out Now: Karine Walther, Sacred Interests: The United States and the Islamic World, 1821-1921

Karine Walther, Sacred Interests: The United States and the Islamic World, 1821-1921. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2015.   Jadliyya (J): What made you write this book? Karine Walther (KW): As my parents were both French immigrants to the United States, I have always been interested in what constitutes “American identity” and the history of how religious, ethnic and “racial” differences have been dealt with in the United States. After I finished my BA at the University ...

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New Texts Out Now: Alex Lubin and Marwan M. Kraidy, eds., American Studies Encounters the Middle East

Alex Lubin and Marwan M. Kraidy, eds. American Studies Encounters the Middle East. Durham: University of North Carolina Press, 2016. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Alex Lubin and Marwan Kraidy (AL and MK): In 2011, just as the so-called “Arab Spring” was underway, the Center for American Studies and Research at the American University of Beirut hosted an international conference to explore historical and contemporary connections between the United States and the Middle East. The ...

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New Texts Out Now: Helga Tawil-Souri and Dina Matar, eds. Gaza as Metaphor

Helga Tawil-Souri and Dina Matar, editors. Gaza As Metaphor (London: Hurst, 2016).  Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Helga Tawil-Souri and Dina Matar (HTS and DM): During and in the immediate aftermath of the Israeli attacks against Gaza in July 2014, we shared a sense of anger and a responsibility to respond to the ways in which Gaza was a target of both military and representational violence. We were struck by the disconnect between how mainstream media, for example, talked ...

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New Texts Out Now: Nadya Hajj, Protection Amid Chaos: The Creation of Property Rights in Palestinian Refugee Camps

Nadya Hajj. Protection Amid Chaos: The Creation of Property Rights in Palestinian Refugee Camps (New York: Columbia University Press, 2016). Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Nadya Hajj (NH): My book was motivated by something I heard in more than two hundred interviews in Palestinian refugee camps across Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria. The central Palestinian refugee narrative was that the community searched for ways to find communal protection in the midst of fawda or chaos in the camps. ...

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New Texts Out Now: Vincent Lemire, Jérusalem 1900. La ville sainte à l'âge des possibles

Vincent Lemire, Jérusalem 1900. La ville sainte à l'âge des possibles. Paris: Points-Seuil, 2016. Jadaliyya (J) : Qu’est-ce qui vous a fait écrire ce livre? Vincent Lemire (V.L.): La réédition de Jérusalem 1900 en format poche (Points-Seuil, septembre 2016) récompense le succès de la première édition (Armand Colin, 2012), mais en fait c’est une plus longue histoire car le projet du livre est né au départ d’un cours magistral enseigné à mes étudiants de Licence à l’Université ...

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New Texts Out Now: Syrie, anatomie d’une guerre civile

Adam Baczko, Gilles Dorronsoro, Arthur Quesnay. Syrie, anatomie d’une guerre civile. Paris: CNRS Editions, 2016. Jadaliyya (J) : Qu’est-ce qui vous a fait publier ce livre? Adam Baczko, Gilles Dorronsoro, Arthur Quesnay (AB, GD, AQ) : L’idée de conduire des recherches en Syrie a émergé durant l’année 2012. Menant des recherches sur d’autres guerres civiles, nous voyions se dérouler en Syrie des processus similaires à ceux que nous observions sur nos terrains respectifs ...

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About NEWTON

Jadaliyya’s NEWTON (New Texts Out Now) section features interviews with writers of recently published and forthcoming books, articles, and translations, along with short excerpts from these new works. The idea of NEWTON is to provide readers with a brief background of a new text, and to help readers to find out about a work that they might not otherwise encounter.

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