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Call for Applicants: The 2015-2016 Ibrahim Abu-Lughod Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Palestine Studies at Columbia University

[Ibrahim Abu-Lughod]

The Center for Palestine Studies at Columbia University’s Middle East Institute is pleased to announce and to invite applications for the 2015-2016 Ibrahim Abu-Lughod Award, a post-doctoral fellowship in Palestinian Studies.  The one-semester fellowship carries a stipend of $25,000 and the status of post-doctoral research fellow or visiting scholar at Columbia University, as appropriate. About The Ibrahim Abu-Lughod Award in Palestine Studies The Ibrahim Abu-Lughod Award is an annual fellowship at Columbia University, which was established in 2010.  The award recognizes and seeks to foster innovative and ground-breaking scholarship on issues related to ...

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Explaining the Bahraini Regime's Land Reclamation Strategy (Video)

The following Financial Times video report reveals the Bahraini regime’s massive land reclamation projects for luxury developments, which solely benefits the ruling elites and takes place at the expense of affordable housing, and as such, has exacerbated anti-regime opposition since 2011.

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Lebanon: Rejecting the New Rent Law: An Open Letter to the Parliament


[After twenty-four years of putting forth different rent bills, the Lebanese Parliament has issued a law to liberalize old rent contracts, published in the Official Gazette on 26 June 2014. A committee to protect the rights of tenants in Lebanon has been formed to oppose this new rent law, and has organized a number of protests throughout Beirut to demand its revision. A blog providing information about the law and documenting activists' initiatives against the new law has also been set up.  Protests have been multiplying over the past week, and a march towards the Speaker's House in Ain el-Tineh is organized on Wednesday 10 December to further pressure on ...

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The Making of Ferguson: Public Policies at the Root of Its Troubles

[Explosives bring down the Pruitt-Igoe public housing towers in St. Louis in 1972. Some former residents got housing assistance to settle in Ferguson and other inner-ring suburbs. Image via Wikimedia Commons]

[The following report was authored by Richard Rothstein and published by the Economic Policy Institute.] The Making of Ferguson: Public Policies at the Root of its Troubles Executive Summary In August 2014, a Ferguson, Missouri, policeman shot and killed an unarmed black teenager. Michael Brown’s death and the resulting protests and racial tension brought considerable attention to that town. Observers who had not been looking closely at our evolving demographic patterns were surprised to see ghetto conditions we had come to associate with inner cities now duplicated in a formerly white suburban community: racially segregated neighborhoods with high poverty and ...

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Open Letter to the Organizing Committee of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco

[Image calling for the boycott of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. Image from the Mouvement 20 février Rabat Facebook Page]

[The following is an open letter that the Rabat branch of the 20 February Movement has written to the international committee organizing the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. Below are also the French and Arabic versions of the letter.] 20 February Movement, Rabat branch 20 November, 2014 Subject: For the reasons below, the 20 February Movement objects to the hosting of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. With your committee's support, Morocco will be hosting the second annual World Forum for Human Rights in Marrakech from 27 November to 30 November 2014. If the expectation of the forum is to provide a platform as the basis for an open international ...

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Faculty Support Student-Workers of UAW 2865 in Solidarity with Palestinian Students and Workers

[The following open letter was published by the below signatories on 14 November 2014.] We are faculty in support of the UAW 2865’s efforts to stand in solidarity with Palestinian workers and students. On December 4, 2014, the UAW 2865 – the union representing teaching assistants, graders, readers, and tutors across the University of California system – will hold a membership-wide vote on a historic resolution to join the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (“BDS”) movement seeking to pressure Israel to end its occupation of Palestinian lands, end its settler-colonial policies, and comply with international and human rights law. As faculty members both at the University of ...

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Steven Salaita Files Lawsuit Against the University of Illinois’ Board of Trustees

Steven Salaita has filed a lawsuit filed in Champaign County Court against the University of Illinois’ Board of Trustees. Salaita and his legal team at the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) maintain that the university administration has failed to comply with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by refusing to provide certain documents. A number of documents were requested, most importantly e-mails between university officials that include keywords such as “Palestine” and “Uncivil.” These documents would help shed light on the circumstances leading to the controversial decision by the UIUC’s Chancellor and the Board of Trustees to rescind Salaita’s job offer ...

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R-Shief Launches New Research Tools Allowing Full Access to Social Media Archives

[R-Shief Logo]

Los Angeles, CA, November 17, 2014, a media research system designed to analyze global social movements, is launching new tools allowing full and free public access to its unique and historic social media archive and analytics in more than seventy languages. Since 2009, the open-source media lab has been analyzing online discussions on networks such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and now Instagram. R-Shief is most known for supporting media analytics on what was tweeted during the eighteen days in Egypt leading to the resignation of former President Hosni Mubarak in 2011. In the past five years, R-Shief has also produced an Arabic sentiment ...

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UCLA's Center for Near East Studies Response to Smear Campaign

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Response to Criticisms of the G.E. von Grunebaum Center for Near Eastern Studies at UCLA The G.E. von Grunebaum Center for Near Eastern Studies (hereafter CNES) of UCLA is one of the oldest such centers in the United States. It is also one of the largest, currently including seventy-six affiliated faculty (among whom are seventeen lecturers/adjuncts and fifteen academically active and productive emeriti), representing such diverse departments/fields as Anthropology, Art History, History, Comparative Literature, Economics, English, Ethnomusicology, French and Francophone Studies, Law, Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, Political Science, Public Health, and World Arts ...

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Call for Papers: International Conference of Critical Geography (Ramallah, 26-30 July 2015)

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Open Call for Participation 7th International Conference of Critical Geography ‘Precarious Radicalism On Shifting Grounds: Towards a Politics of Possibility’  26-30 July 2015  |  Ramallah, Palestine |   ANNOUNCEMENT The sense of revolutionary times triggered by recent events such as the Greek revolts, the Indignados and Occupy movements, as well as the Arab uprisings and the Idle No More protests in Canada, has been gradually overshadowed by a wave of virulent and violent responses by both state and global powers. Although these and other struggles have captured our imagination, an anxious feeling of being in a permanent ...

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An Invitation by Tenured Faculty at Princeton to Divest from Companies Profiting from Israeli Occupation

[The below petition was published in the Daily Princetonian.] The following petition was begun by five faculty members in History and Near Eastern Studies and now has the following signatories. This ad serves both as an announcement of the petition to the community and as an invitation to the tenured faculty across the university for their support. If you would like to sign the petition, please send an email to: […]. The petition will be presented to the university administration before Thanksgiving. Deeply concerned about the brutality of Israeli military rule over Palestinians in the occupied West Bank as well as the ongoing Israeli military and economic siege ...

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Press Release: University of Toronto Students Condemn Racist Attacks on Free Speech on Campus and Demand Accountability and Action by Administration

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[The following press released was issued on 31 October 2014 by the University of Toronto Graduate Students' Union.] On Monday, October 27th students and faculty gathered for the launch of the UofT Divest campaign, which calls on the university to withdraw investments from three companies complicit in violations of international law in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Unfortunately the event was disrupted, although not derailed, by an off-campus group calling themselves the Jewish Defence League (JDL), classified as a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Centre and responsible for violently disrupting numerous Palestinian ...

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Call for Submissions: Asfari Institute Art Competition on the Theme of 'Active Citizenry'

The Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship in issuing a call for submissons to its first Art Competition. Artwork should be inspired by social movements, urpsiings, struggles for human rights, and citizens engagement, inlcusive of hope and defeat, in all their forms.  Awards for this competition include a $1500 first-place prize, a $1000 second-place prize, and a $500 third-place prize. The artwork will be used to promote the First Annual Conference: Exploring an Agenda for Active ...

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في الإعتراض على قانون الإيجارات الجديد: رسالة مفتوحة الى المجلس النيابي

بعد ٢٤ سنة من طرح مشاريع قوانين إيجار مختلفة، إعتمد المجلس النيابي إصدار قانون تصحيح الإيجارات القديمة، والذي نشر في الجريدة الرسمية في تاريخ ٢٦ حزيران ٢٠١٤. منذ العام ١٩٩٢، تم وقف العمل بنظام ضبط الإيجارات للعقود الجديدة، في حين بقي ساري المفعول لكافة العقود المبرمة قبل ذلك التاريخ. أما تحرير الإيجارات القديمة تم ربطه بخطة سكنية شاملة (لم تتحقق) تتيح الوصول الى السكن الملائم بأسعار مقبولة‪. أثار صدور مشروع قانون الإيجارات الجديد في العام 2014 تساؤلات عدة، أهمها: هل يعتمد القانون على معايير العدالة ...

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Still Singing for the Egyptian Revolution: A Conversation with Ramy Essam (3 December, George Mason University)

The Middle East Studies Program at GMU and the Arab Studies Institute present A Conversation with Artist Ramy Essam Still Singing for The Egyptian Revolution Wednesday, 3 December 2014 6:00 PM, Research Hall 163 George Mason University Open to the Public Ramy is bringing his guitar to share some (new) tunes Free Pizza Will Be Served Catch his tracks on iTunes and YouTube  Ramy Essam is best known for his heady performances in Tahrir Square during the eighteen ...

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Between Ballots and Boycotts: Bahrain’s Political and Electoral Systems Assessed

[The following is an overview of last week’s parliamentary elections in Bahrain that Ala’a Shehabi wrote for Bahrain Watch on 26 November 2014.]  On Saturday 22 November, Bahrain held parliamentary elections. Bahrain Watch looks at the significance of these elections in relation to the political system as a whole and evaluates the election using basic principles from the IDEA’s Book on International Electoral Standards. We find critical breaches of international electoral standards, in ...

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Call for Applicants: University of Houston Professorship in Modern Arab History

The Department of History at the University of Houston invites applications for the Arab-American Educational Foundation Professorship in Modern Arab History at the senior associate or full professor level. The chair will play an instrumental role in the development of Arabic Studies at UH and will be actively involved with the local community through facilitating community events. Candidates for the position should be working in the post 1798 time period. Applicants for this position should have native ...

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Event at GMU: The Double Execution of Saddam Hussein: Diaspora, Media, and Images, with Zainab Saleh

Middle East Studies Program, Middle East Etc. Film Club, Center for Global Islamic Studies, and School of Policy, Government & International Affairs (SPGIA), and Department of Sociology and Anthropology Present The Double Execution of Saddam Hussein: Diaspora, Media, and Images With Zainab Saleh  November 25, 2014 Research Hall 163 @ 6PM George Mason University This talk focuses on the double execution of Saddam Hussein, namely his execution and the fall of his statue in Baghdad. ...

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Press Release: Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA Hails Divestment Victory & Thanks All Supporters

[The following press release was issued on 19 November 2014 by Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at the University of California Los Angeles] For Immediate Release Students for Justice in Palestine Hails Divestment Victory, Thanks all Supporters Contact: Divestment organizers at UCLA, representing a wide coalition of students from all backgrounds and sectors of campus, celebrated a milestone victory for social justice with the passage of "A Resolution to Divest ...

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Call for Papers--Transformed Nations: State-Policies in Kurdish Populated Areas of Syria, Iraq, Turkey, and Iran (Istanbul, 23 February 2015)

Call for Papers IFEA-Ifpo-University of Exeter Workshop Transformed Nations: State-Policies in Kurdish Populated Areas of Syria, Iraq, Turkey, and Iran (A Comparative Approach from a Transnational Perspective) Istanbul, 23 February 2015 I. Presentation of the Workshop In 2013, the French Institute for Anatolian Studies (IFEA, Istanbul), the French Institute for the Near East (IFPO, Erbil) and the University of Exeter, with the help of Aix- Marseille University, launched a common research ...

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An Open Letter to King Mohammed VI

[The following open letter was written by Moroccan journalist Hamza Mahfoud on 11 November 2014, in response to King Mohammed VI's speech marking the anniversary of the Green March. The open letter was originally published in Arabic on Huna Sotak and translated to English by Abdellah Laaraj. Since its publication, the open letter has been widely disseminated on social media, drawing a wide range of responses.] Dear King, I am writing regarding the Sahara after having watched your speech last ...

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Why Anthropologists Should Boycott Israeli Academic Institutions

On Israel and Palestine: Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israeli Institutions In its best moments, anthropology is a discipline that is dedicated to social justice. It is a discipline that has historically stood up for marginalized peoples around the world. Anthropologists have not always lived up to these best ideals, of course, and the history of our discipline includes cooperation with colonial and imperial regimes and with war machines. Yet there have always been anthropologists who have criticized ...

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How the United States Helped ISIS

[The following opinion piece was authored by Andrew Thompson and Jeremi Suri, and published in The New York Times on 1 October 2014] How America Helped ISIS Austin, Texas — The Islamic State terrorists who have emerged in Iraq and Syria are neither new nor unfamiliar. Many of them spent years in detention centers run by the United States and its coalition partners in Iraq after 2003. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State, spent nearly five years imprisoned at Camp Bucca in southern ...

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Film Screening and Director Discussion: Eliane Raheb's Layali Bala Noom (10 November, George Mason University)

Middle East Studies Program, Arab Studies Institute, and Middle East Etc. Film Club Present: Layali Bala Noom (Sleepless Nights) With Film Director Eliane Raheb  Monday, November 10 JC Cinema @ 7PM George Mason University Pizza and Refreshments Provided  More Information:  Film Synopsis: Through the stories of Assaad Shaftari, a former high ranking intelligence officer in a Christian right wing militia, responsible for many casualties in the protracted ...

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