Near Eastern Languages and Cultures | The Cultural History of the Middle East
N695 | 16017 | Prof. Kevin Martin

06:00P-08:30P	T	BH 335

This course is conceived as both an introduction to a sub-discipline
within the field of historical inquiry, i.e., Cultural History, and
an examination of how the tools of that sub-discipline can be
applied to the study of Middle East history. Thus its objectives
are: (1) Expanding and refining the student’s general knowledge of
the region’s history; (2) Stimulating interest in the cultural
history of the Middle East by providing a general familiarity with
the disciplinary, intellectual, and ideological sources of cultural
history, the major issues concerning this field, and the relevant
extant literature. Cultural history has been largely redefined in
the last twenty years, and under its “new” rubric is currently
seeking a place beside political, economic, and social history as an
indispensable field of historical study.

The very concept of cultural history suggests a synthesis of
disciplines. As culture is generally considered the “core concept”
of anthropology, this course will necessarily examine the ways in
which this and related concepts have been understood and applied by
anthropologists. It will also examine the ways in which history, a
discipline not known for its theoretical or methodological
singularity, has made use of the above and of comparable
contributions from the fields of human geography, comparative
literature, gender studies, consumption studies, etc. This course is
designed for NELC graduate students and Ph.D. candidates in History
who have an interest in the Middle East.