Middle East News – May 10th, 2012

The Algerian Parliamentary elections this week represent a large step forward for the North African country

– The deadliest attack in the 14 month long conflict occurred in the Syrian capital (Damascus) yesterday, raising fears that jihadists are becoming involved in the struggle and that the government is losing control, which could be the precursor for more violence – Read more at CNN

– An Israeli film has been released that hopes to explore the circumstances of the murder of a prominent Hamas leader in 2010 – it is commonly speculated that Israel’s secret service, the Mossad, was behind the attacks that occurred in the United Arab Emirates – Read more at CNN

– Elections have begun for the Algerian Parliament – Unlike many other North African countries, Algeria was mostly untouched by the Arab Spring revolts so this is the country’s first opportunity to modernize its aging government – Read more from BBC

– Protests calling for reform are ramping up in Jordan as the ruling monarchy stalls in its promised reform movements – Read more from BBC


“Islam in Central Eurasia” symposium – Friday, May 11th, 2012

A message from CREECA (Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia) -

Please join us this Friday, May 11, from 2:30-5:30 pm in 336 Ingraham 
Hall for an informal graduate student symposium on "Islam in Central 

Graduate students in LCA 850 (Seminar in Turkic Studies), taught by 
Professor Uli Schamiloglu, will present 15-minute synopses of their 
semester-long research projects, addressing various aspects of Islam in 
Central Eurasia. This symposium is open to everyone and no registration 
is required. Light refreshments will be served.

PDF of symposium schedule - Symposium Program-2012

Daily Middle East news – May 2nd, 2012

Abdel Imam, the Egyptian actor threatened with imprisonment for ‘Insulting Islam’

Three articles of interest concerning Middle East events:

Eleven people were killed today during protests regarding Egypt’s upcoming elections. The assailants are unknown, but it sheds doubt on the legitimacy of the upcoming elections.

Egyptian movie star put in jail for ‘insulting Islam’ in old pre-revolution movies

Israeli political scene in turmoil as high up officials argue about how to deal with Iran

Enchantings: Modernity, Culture, and the State in Postcolonial Africa – Thursday April 26th-Saturday April 28th, 2012

The Institute for Research in the Humanities is sponsoring a three day long symposium filled with over a dozen different lectures detailing the trials and tribulations of Africa in a post-colonial world.  The event will cover the affects of post-colonialism on the governments, culture and social history of Africa in the last fifty years.  These topics will surely cover Northern Africa, or the area that falls under the nomenclature of the Middle East, as well, meaning that this symposium is certainly relevant to Middle East Studies.  Head over to the website for a more detailed look at lecture schedules and content. 

Gulf in the Media Website

If you have been struggling to find a reliable and efficient news source for all things Middle East, look no further. Gulfinthemedia.com is a continuous stream of news articles pulled from many different news outlets, all chronicling the daily occurrences of the Middle East.

So, if you want to keep up to date with the constantly shifting world of the Middle East this is the website for you.


Check out the Inside Islam blog

The conceptions (or rather misconceptions) about Islam in the world today are wide are far-reaching, and range from minor theological differences to abject racism and Islamophobia.  There aren’t as many resources as there should be to instruct the general public on the basic tenets of Islam, but right here at UW there is a great blog/radio show entitled Inside Islam that should be checked out by anyone wanting to objectively learn more about this misunderstood world religion.  There is a daily blog here that highlights particularly issues concerning Islam in great detail that will inform a reader with any level of knowledge concerning Islam.  This organization is a great gateway for others as well who may be lacking understanding of the basics of Islam.  So tell all your non-Middle East Studies majors friends about it so they will stop not knowing Ramadan from Zakat.



Isthmus Society Lecture on Islam – Thursday, April 19th, 2012

The Isthmus Society Presents:

“Between text(s) and practice(s): Islamic prophetic medicine
in scientific and religious knowledge regimes”
A Public Lecture by
Ahmed Ragab
Richard T. Watson Assistant Professor
of Science and Religion at Harvard Divinity School
When: Thursday, April 19th, 3:00-4:30pm
Where: Wisconsin Idea Room, Education Building, UW-Madison
For additional information visit: www.isthmussociety.org
Co-Sponsored by:
The John Templeton Foundation
The Lubar Institute for the Study of the Abrahamic Religions
UW-Madison Department of the History of Science
UW-Madison Department of Medical History and Bioethics