Students studying outside the library

Past Events

2016-2017

March 16
No Place to Call Home: The Origins of the Refugee Crisis in the Middle East
Dr. Michelle Tusan, Professor of History University of Nevada Las Vegas
Sponsored by the Department of History

March 14
"To Serve Beyond Death:" The Contested Construction of a Colonial Mausoleum in French Morocco
Maréchal Hubert Lyautey died in Thorey, France, in July 1934, and the French government laid him to rest in a mausoleum in Rabat, Morocco the next year, in October 1935. Lyautey was the first resident general of the French Protectorate of Morocco (1912-1925) and a devout Catholic, but the mausoleum eschewed most architectural representations of his faith, vocation and nation. "Architecture, like music," writes historian Diana Wylie, "has enormous power to express, and to shape, who people think they are and what they believe in it." Building on this intriguing statement, Dr. Stacey E. Holden's talk examines responses to this funerary structure honoring a French colonial hero and uncovers tensions between the French and Moroccan elite.
Sponsored by Department of Religion and MENA

February 20
Being Muslim in America: America, Muslims, and the Middle East in a World of Conflict
The American Muslim community finds itself in a precarious situation: On one hand, there are frequent acts of violence committed by ISIS and other extremist organizations in Syria, Iraq, Pakistan Brussels, Paris, Istanbul, Nigeria, and elsewhere. On the other hand, the recent presidential cycle has witnessed talk of national registry for Muslims and an almost exclusive association of "Muslims" with "radicalism." Where do we go from here? How do we imagine a possibility for Muslims to be meaningful participants in establishing a just community as Americans and as global citizens? Dr. Omid Safi, professor of Islamic Studies at Duke University, is a leading Muslim public intellectual. He is the director of the Duke Islamic Studies Center, one of the leading institutions for research on Islam and promoting publicly accessible scholarship on Islam and Muslim communities worldwide. Safe is also an award-winning teacher and has appeared frequently in the New York Times, Newsweek, Washington Post, PBS, NPR, NBC, BBC, CNN, and international media.
Sponsored by the International and Foreign Language Education office of the U.S. Department of Education, in partnership with the MENA studies program

December 3
Islam in Cairo
A Discussion with Professor Doaa Baumi of Al Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt
Sponsored by the MENA program, Fulbright Alumni Grant, Religion in the Public Sphere, Department of Religion, and MSA

November 30
Humanitarian Interventionism and the War Lobby: The Case of the Syrian Diaspora in the First World War
Edward Allaire Falk, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, San Diego, will speak on the role of the Syrian diaspora in advocating for a humanitarian intervention in Syria by the allied powers in the First World War. His talk, based on research in Lebanese, French, and Turkish archives, seeks to connect the cultural production of the Syrian poets, playwrights and authors with the political lobbying of that community. His broader research examines the role of education in the creation of Lebanese identity and nationalism in the Ottoman period. 
Sponsored by MENA 


 2015-2016

March 23
"What's Driving Islamophobia in America? Fear, Freedom and the Responsibilities of Democracy"
Dr. Todd Green, Associate Professor of Religion at Luther College

March 9
Syria's Refugee Crisis, Islamophobia and the ISIS PR Machine
Dr. Amanda E. Rogers, a postdoctoral research fellow at Georgia State University, spoke on the Paris terrorist attacks, domestic fear and refugee resettlement. Rogers, who holds a Ph.D. from Emory University, is an activist, political analyst, artist and multi-media journalist. 

March 3
Syria and the European Refugee Crisis: Liquidating Syria, Fracking Europe
A presentation by Dr. Leila Hudson, an associate professor in the School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies at the University of Arizona and director of the Southwest Initiative for the Study of Middle East Conflicts. Based on current research, this talk examines the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis and its impact on Europe. 
Sponsored by the Government Department, MENA program, and Cultural Affairs Committee

November 19
Refugees in Spartanburg: A Student-Led Discussion
A presentation and discussion about the Syrian refugee crisis, its effect on Spartanburg and what Wofford students can do to help. Moderated by Rev. Ron Robinson. 
Sponsored by MSA, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion, and the MENA Program

October 20
Studying Islam in the Age of ISIS & the Internet: A Conversation with Dr. Richard Martin
What challenges do students and faculty in Islamic Studies face in an era of knowledge that comes from the blogosphere and Twitter? Join a conversation about how Islamic Studies has evolved and changed since the 1960s with Dr. Richard Martin, distinguished professor emeritus of Religion from Emory University and editor of the Review of Middle East Studies

September 30
LGBTQ Issues in Lebanon: A Discussion with Dr. Jed Anderson
Dr. Jed Anderson is the new Middle Eastern and North African Studies postdoc and is offering introduction to Arabic this year and next at Wofford. This spring he will offer a course on the Israeli Palestinian Conflict (MENA 480). He will discuss his research on LGBTQ issues in Lebanon.
Sponsored by the Office of Diversity & Inclusion, MSA, MENA Program, and Spectrum

September 2
Mystical Sounds of Islam: Voices of Qawwali
Showcasing internationally acclaimed ensemble Fanna-Fi-Allah at the Humanities and Performing Arts Center, USC Upstate.
Sponsored by the Humanities Council in SC, USC Upstate, and Wofford College


2014-2015

March 20
Feminism and the Legacies and the Legacies of Armed Struggle in Kurdistan
Susan Benson-Sokmen, a PhD Candidate at the University of Toronto, will speak about the role armed struggle plays in the articulation of the Kurdistan Worker's Party feminist theory.
Sponsored by the MSA, Cultural Affairs, Women's History Month, and the Department of Religion


2013-2014

November 18
My Two Years in Gaza
Lyndall Herman is currently a PhD student at the University of Arizona in the School of Middle East and North African Studies. Prior to this Lydall worked for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in the Gaza Strip for two years from 2007-2009. During her time in the Gaza Strip, Lyndall was the Assistant to the Director of UNRWA operations in the Gaza Strip and fortunate enough to enjoy almost unlimited access to the organizations and various projects throughout the strip. During her two years, Lyndall witnessed the enduring spirit of the Palestinian people in the face of great adversity–from both within Gaza and without. The presentation provides young professionals perspective on living in Gaza while working for an aid organization, while also addressing some of the political and cultural dynamics and issues in navigating life in such a contested location. 
Sponsored by the Department of Religion