FOOD FABRICATION: Culinary practices and food politics in the Arab world

FoodFabrication_PostcardFrontThe Orient-Institut Beirut and the Goethe-Institut Lebanon take a closer look at culinary practices and food politics in the Arab world

Beirut, 14-17 January 2015

Taking a comprehensive look at food heritage, politics and practices in Lebanon and the Arab World, the Orient-Institut Beirut and the Goethe-Institut Lebanon are pleased to announce their forthcoming forum Food Fabrication, to take place in Beirut from 14 to 17 January 2015. Food is a basic need, yet a subject of contestation, especially in this region where food insecurity coexists with obesity, and where most of the food consumed is imported.  Food Fabrication aims to contribute to current debates around food by addressing pressing issues such as food globalization, food safety, food security and culinary practices. Continue reading

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Abschlussdiskussion/Concluding panel discussion

Chair: Prof. Dr. Julius H. Schoeps, Potsdam

Minderheiten im Nahen Osten und die westliche Welt
Prof. Dr. SHLOMO AVINERI, Jerusalem
Prof. Dr. MICHAEL STÜRMER, Die Welt
Dr. SYLKE TEMPEL, Internationale Politik

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Panel IV

Panel IV: Bedrohte Kulturen und die Herausforderung der Vergangenheit/Endangered cultures and the challenges of the past

Chair: Dr. Olaf Glöckner, Potsdam

Aleppo as a prism of minorities, cultures and destruction in the Middle East
Dr. UǦUR ÜMIT ÜNGÖR, Utrecht/Amsterdam

Vergangenheitsbewältigung als Herausforderung in der Türkei
Dr. ULRIKE DUFNER, Istanbul

Die Situation der Minderheiten im Iran
Dr. WAHIED WAHDAT-HAGH, Berlin

Die Situation der Drusen im Nahen Osten
TOBIAS LANG M.A., Wien

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Panel III

Panel III: Minderheiten, Konflikte und neue Einflüsse/Minorities, conflicts and new impacts

Chair: Dr. Thomas Scheffler, Beirut

Der Nahe Osten als aktueller Konfliktherd
Dr. MICHAEL LÜDERS, Berlin

Die Kopten und der “Arabische Frühling” in Ägypten
Dr. SEBASTIAN ELSÄSSER, Kiel

Segmentation of nations and fragmentation of segments, based on the Iraqi experience in nation-building and re-building
Dr. FALEH ABDUL-JABBAR, Beirut

Interreligous dialogue in the Middle East: a failed experiment?
Prof. Dr. KAMEL S. ABU JABER, Amman

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Panel II (2)

Panel II: Minderheiten, Verfolgung und politische Interaktion/Minorities, persecution and political interaction

Chair: Dr. Rolf Hosfeld, Potsdam/Dr. Thomas Scheffler, Beirut

Religious Minorities in the Middle East
Dr. HAMDAM NADAFI, Brüssel

Die Situation der Kurden im Nahen Osten
Dr. GÜNTER SEUFERT, Berlin

Der Syrien-Konflikt und seine Auswirkungen auf die Minderheiten
Dr. FRIEDERIKE STOLLEIS, Beirut

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Panel II (1)

Minderheiten, Verfolgung und politische Interaktion/Minorities, persecution and political interaction
Chair: Dr. Rolf Hosfeld, Potsdam/Dr. Thomas Scheffler,
Beirut

Christliche Minderheiten im Nahen Osten: Ein Störfaktor in der westlichen Geopolitik?
Dr. THOMAS SCHEFFLER, Beirut

Living together, but separately? Federalization projects in Lebanon since 1975
Dr. ANDRÉ SLEIMAN, Beirut

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? Panel I

Panel I: Frühes 20. Jahrhundert, Erster Weltkrieg und Neugliederung des Nahen Ostens/Early 20th century, World War 1 and new order in the Middle East

Chair: Dr. Rolf Hosfeld, Potsdam

Der Zerfall des Osmanischen Reiches und seine Nachwirkungen: Talât Pasha
Prof. Dr. HANS-LUKAS KIESER, Zürich

Islamisches Ordnungswissen und die Idee der Nation: Konkurrenzen, Aporien und die Erfindung der Minderheiten
Prof. Dr. MIHRAN DABAG, Bochum

Minorities and mandates: The making of communal identities in the interwar period
Prof. Dr. BIRGIT SCHÄBLER, Erfurt

Demokratische Aufbrüche, die im Nahen Osten vor vier Jahren als “Arabischer Frühling” begannen, haben eine tragische Wendung genommen. Autokratische Regime wurden zwar gestürzt oder in ihre Schranken gewiesen, doch im entstandenen Machtvakuum streiten ethnozentrierte und religiös-radikalisierte Gruppen militant und undemokratisch um Partikularinteressen. Einige Staaten erleben dabei rasante Zerfallsprozesse, andere offenen Bürgerkrieg, und wieder andere verfestigte Hierarchien und Angst vor allem Neuen. Eine seismografische Komponente des Geschehens sind die zahlreichen ethno-religiösen Minderheiten der Region, nun konfrontiert mit fließenden Transformationsprozessen und ungewisser Zukunft. In einer Situation zerfallender Ordnungen, inkompatibler Machtansprüche und hoher manifester und latenter Gewalt wird ethnische und kulturelle Diversität kaum noch als Chance begriffen, sondern eher als Störfaktor und Sicherheitsrisiko. Wie gehen die ethno-religiösen Minderheiten mit dieser für sie bedrohlichen Situation um? Welcher Handlungsspielraum bleibt ihnen überhaupt? Und wo liegt – ungeachtet der dramatischen Entwicklungen – noch Potential für ein Miteinander der verschiedenen Religionen, Ethnien und Kulturen im Nahen Osten? Die vom Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam, dem Lepsiushaus Potsdam, dem Orient-Institut Beirut und der Europäischen Akademie Berlin gemeinsam veranstaltete internationale Konferenz geht diesen Fragen anhand verschiedenster Länder, Minderheiten und Konstellationen nach.

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region. Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies. Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Conference Livestream: Where is the Middle East heading? – Welcome and Keynote Speech

Begrüßung/Welcome by
Prof. Dr. Julius H. Schoeps, MMZ Potsdam
Dr. Rolf Hosfeld, Lepsiushaus Potsdam
Dr. Thomas Scheffler, Orient-Institut Beirut
Dr. Elisabeth Botsch, Europäische Akademie Berlin

Prof. Dr. Shlomo Avineri, Jerusalem
Nationalism, nation-states, minority rights, and historical identities in the post-Ottoman space

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region.  Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances. Continue reading

Conference: Where is the Middle East heading? Ethno-religious minorities between persecution and self-determination

Flyer Konferenz Wohin treibt der Nahe Osten_finale Version-page-002International conference in Berlin, 30 November – 2 December 2014:

The Orient-Institut Beirut – in cooperation with Lepsiushaus Potsdam, the Moses Mendelssohn Centre at Potsdam University and the European Academy Berlin – is organizing an international conference on the situation of Middle Eastern minorities after the “Arab Spring” entitled “Where is the Middle East heading? Ethno-religious minorities between persecution and self-determination” (Wohin treibt der Nahe Osten? Ethno-religiöse Minderheiten im Nahen Osten zwischen Verfolgung und Selbstbehauptung).

Since the beginning of the “Arab Spring” in December 2010, complex and dramatic transformations have taken place in the Middle East. Up to now, it remains difficult to assess their impact on the people, societies and governments in the region.  Previously stable forms of government, politico-territorial boundaries, and the entire Middle Eastern state system established after World War I are destabilized under the pressure of large mass movements, escalating violence, humanitarian catastrophes, and the bitter competition between national and transnational players and powerful international alliances.

One central seismographic component of this process is formed by the region’s numerous ethno-religious minorities who are facing an uncertain future and must reorient themselves in an extremely fluid and fragile socio-political environment. In a situation of decaying order, incompatible claims to power and a high level of manifest and latent violence, ethnic and cultural diversity is rarely understood as an opportunity to create overall shared social and cultural growth, but is rather seen as a security risk.

Depending on local interests and the power resources available, the various religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East are trying to deal with this contradictory and threatening situation at different levels and with different strategies.  Besides a trend of increased individual emigration, there are attempts to support the old regimes, create alliances with other minorities, and find secularist partners willing to engage in talks within the majority population, or defend the interests of their own community with arms if necessary.

The conference will explore and compare the conditions, political dynamics, survival strategies, and international networks of different ethno-religious minorities in the Middle East in the framework of the historical development spanning the end of the Ottoman Empire, the European Mandate period and the era of Arab nationalism up to the present.

Convenors: Orient-Institut Beirut, Lepsiushaus Potsdam, Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam

Date: 30 November – 2 December 2014

Venue: Europäische Akademie Berlin, Bismarckallee 46/48, D-14193 Berlin-Grunewald

For full PDF-programme click here.

Summer Academy: Lectures

You are cordially invited to attend our public lectures of the Summer Academy “Language, Science and Aesthetics”.

Lecture I  11 Sept, 5 – 6.30 pm, AUB, Building 37
 Ray Brassier (American University of Beirut)
Dialectics between Suspicion and Trust

Lecture II  12 Sept, 5 – 6.30 pm, Orient-Institut Beirut
Hans Harder
(University of Heidelberg)
Reading Paratexts: The significance of textual frames

Lecture III  13 Sept, 11.30 am – 1.00 pm, Orient-Institut Beirut
Nader el-Bizri (
American University of Beirut)
Ontological-Epistemological Renewals within the Dialectics of Tradition and Modernity?
Critical reflections on
methodology in the field of ‘Arabic sciences and philosophy’

Lecture IV  15 Sept, 5 – 6.30 pm, Orient-Institut Beirut
Kirsten Scheid
(American University of Beirut)
Dhawq

Lecture V  16 Sept, 5 – 6.30 pm, Orient-Institut Beirut
Monica Juneja
(University of Heidelberg)
From the Religious to the Aesthetic Image – or the struggle over art that offends

Lecture VI  18 Sept, 5 – 6.30 pm, AUB, Building 37
Bodhisattva Kar
(University of Cape Town)
Modernity and Misplacement: A curious history of anachronism

The public lectures are part of the Summer Academy “Language, Science and Aesthetics – Articulations of Subjectivity and Objectivity in the Modern Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia”, which takes place from 11 – 19 September 2014 in Beirut.

Jointly organized by Orient-Institut Beirut (OIB) and Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin.

 

poster

 

Summer Academy: Our Participants

??????????????????????????We are pleased to welcome our participants for our Summer Academy “Language, Science and Aesthetics – Articulations of Subjectivity and Objectivity in the Modern Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia“, which will take place 11-19 September 2014 in Beirut.

All participants (in alphabetical order):

Hussein Abdulsater / Assistant Professor, Civilization Sequence Program, American University of Beirut
Thematic Discussion: Renewing Falsafa: Epistemic possibilities and methodological obstacles

Hannah Baader / Permanent Senior Research Fellow Kunsthistorisches Institut Florenz, Max-Planck-Institut/Academic Program Director Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices, Berlin

Monique Bellan / Research Associate, Orient-Institut Beirut
Research Seminar: Between Subjectivity and Objectivity: Talking about art in Lebanon (1920-1970)

Nader el-Bizri / Associate Professor, Civilization Sequence Program, American University of Beirut
Lecture: Ontological-Epistemological Renewals within the Dialectics of Tradition and Modernity? Critical reflections on methodology in the field of ‘Arabic Sciences and Philosophy’
Thematic Discussion: Renewing Falsafa: Epistemic possibilities and methodological obstacles

Nadia Bou Ali / Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at American University of Beirut
Thematic Discussion: Of Mirrors and Words: Arabic and the questions of modernity

Daniel Blanga-Gubbay / Lecturer Political Philosophy, Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Brussels
Project: The Experience of the Possible – The possible as an object in Western modernity

Edna Bonhomme / Doctoral candidate, History of Science Program, Princeton University
Project: The Bubonic Plague, Death Rituals and Cemeteries in Eighteenth-Century Cairo and Tunis

Ray Brassier / Associate Professor Of Philosphy, American University of Beirut
Lecture: Deleveling: Against “Flat Ontologies”

Lawrence Chua / Visiting Assistant Professor, school of Architecture, Syracuse University, New York
Project: The Aesthetic Citizen: Leisure architecture and fascism in mid-20th-century Bangkok

Pankhuree Dube / Doctoral candidate, History of Modern South Asia, Emory University Atlanta
Project: Pardhan Gond Aesthetics and the Politics of Authenticity, 1936-2001

Christian Funke / Ph.D. candidate, Islamic Studies, University of Heidelberg
Project: Aesthetic Formations of Political Protest in the Islamic Republic of Iran and its Diaspora (2009-2013)

Jessica Gerschultz / Assistant Professor in the Dep. of African and African-American Studies,
University of Kansas
Project: Decorative Arts of the Tunisian École

Dahlia Gubara
/ Postdoc Fellow, Orient Institut Beirut
Research Seminar: “Situating Science”: the View from Cairo

Hans Harder / Professor of Modern South Asian Languages and Literatures, University of HeidelbergLecture: Lecture: Reading Paratexts: the significance of textual frames
Thematic Discussion: Textual/Artistic Genre, Modernity and Colonial Governmentality

Rattanamol Singh Johal / Doctoral candidate in Art History, Columbia University
Project: The Unresolved Modern in Indian Art

Joya John /Doctoral Candidate in the Dept. of South Asian Languages and Civilizations,
University of Chicago
Project: Bhasa ki ansthirta (The Instability of Language)

Monica Juneja / Professor of Global Art History, University of Heidelberg
Lecture: From the Religious to the Aesthetic image – or the Struggle over Art that offends
Thematic Discussion: Global Art History and the Conceptions of the Local

Gül Kale / School of Architecture, McGill University, Montreal
Project: From Lived Experience to Emotional and Intellectual Knowledge in Early Modern
Ottoman Architecture

Bodhisattva Kar / Senior Lecturer, Dept. of History, University of Cape Town
Lecture: Modernity and Misplacement: A Curious History of Anachronism
Thematic Discussion: Textual/Artistic Genre, Modernity and Colonial Governmentality

Siti Keo / Ph.D. candidate in the Dep. of History, University of California, Berkeley
Project: Understanding Change: Modernity and Urban Life in Sangkum Reastr Niyum
Phnom Penh (1955-1970)

Sami Khatib / Lecturer in media and cultural theory at Freie Universität Berlin
Project: Marx and the Non-European. On the Grammar of ‘Commodity-Language

Stephanie Lämmert / Doctoral Researcher, European University, Florence
Project: Creative Notions of ‘Modernity’ in Shambaa Colonial Court Culture

Stefan Leder / Director Orient-Institut Beirut

Samir Mahmoud / Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at American University of Beirut
Research Seminar: Thematic Discussion: Towards a Phenomenology of Religious Experience in Islam: Issues, aporias and possibilities

 Anne-Marie McManus / Assistant Professor of Modern Arabic literature and Culture, Washington University in St. Louis
Project: Unfinished Awakenings: Nahḍat al Maghrib

Combiz Moussavi-Aghdam / Lecturer at Art University Teheran; Researcher at Academy of Arts, Teheran
Project: Art History and Modern Aesthetics in the Iranian Context

Ertugrul Okten / Edebiyat Facultesi History, 29 Mayis University Istanbul
Thematic Discussion: Of Mirrors and Words: Arabic and the questions of modernity

Abdur Rahoof Otthathingal / Erasmus Mundus graduate fellow, Colonial and Global History division of Institute for History, Leiden University
Project: Travel of Languages, Trans-Formations of Religion: Arabi-Malayalam and vernacular Islam in Malabar, South India, 17th to 20th C.

Maria Elena Paniconi / Lecturer of Arabic Language and Literature, University of Marcerata
Project: Self-portrait as a Young Man – Autobiography, modernity and the aesthetic apprenticeship in the Egyptian experience

Junaid Quadri / Assistant Professor of History and Religious Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago
Project: Transformations of Tradition: Representationalism, the new science and Islamic law

Dhruv Raina / Professor of History of Science and Education at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi
Research Seminar: Itineraries of Mathematical Knowledge in 19th Century South Asia: The universal and contextual in mathematical practice

Kirsten Scheid / Associate Professor of Anthropology, American University of Beirut
Lecture: Dhawq
Thematic Discussion: Global Art History and the Conceptions of the Local

Malek Sharif / Lecturer at Department of History and Archaeology, American University of Beirut
Research Seminar: Language, Objectivity and Aesthetics in an Autobiography

Kutlughan Soyubol / Doctoral Candidate in History at The Graduate Center, The City University of New York
Project: Possessed Souls, Medical Wars: Madness, religion and modernity in early republican Turkey

Adrien-Paul Zakar / Ph.D. Candidate, Department of History, Columbia University New York
Project: Spiritualist Geographies and the Invention of Syria (1898-1928)

Florian Zemmin / Ph.D. Candidate, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies at University of Bern
Project: The Concept of ‘Society’ in the Mouthpiece of Islamic Modernism, al-Manar (Cairo, 1898–1940)

Chuntian Zhang / Si-Mian Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities, East China Normal University
Project: Subjectivity and Objectivity of Chinese Revolution Discourses: Transcultural Practices in the making of modern China, 1899-1927

Contact:

Dr. Monique Bellan (Orient-Institut Beirut)
bellan@orient-institut.org

Dr. Miriam Stock (Orient-Institut Beirut)
summeracademy@orient-institut.org

Dr. Melanie Hanif (Forum Transregionale Studien Berlin)
melanie.hanif@trafo-berlin.de

The Summer Academy

“Language, Science and Aesthetics – Articulations of Subjectivity and Objectivity in the Modern Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia”

is organized by the

Orient-Institut Beirut (OIB)
Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin

logo OIB - CopyLogo Forum Transregionale Studien

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Academy: “Language, Science and Aesthetics”

The International Summer Academy is organized by  the Orient-Institut Beirut and the Berlin-based Forum Transregionale Studien. It is chaired by a group of scholars that include Monique Bellan (Orient-Institut Beirut), Nadia Bou Ali (American University of Beirut), Dahlia Gubara (Orient-Institut Beirut), Hans Harder (Heidelberg University), Bodhisattva Kar (University of Cape Town), Stefan Leder (Orient-Institut Beirut) and Dhruv Raina (Jawaharlal Nehru University).

Entitled Language, Science and Aesthetics – Articulations of Subjectivity and Objectivity in the Modern Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia, this Summer Academy offers early-career scholars an opportunity to follow up on the debates about modernity, its preconditions and its aftermath by focusing on the multifarious processes and often unique ways in which societies outside Europe have adopted, translated, rejected or produced the global, the modern and tradition since the seventeenth century. It places a specific focus on the notions of subjectivity and objectivity, the individual and the subject, as key  notions of modernity, and addresses systems and practices of knowledge production, communication and authority as they developed in the region that extends from Morocco to Indonesia. The Summer Academy engages with the debates on the writing of a more global history by paying particular attention to changing textual and aesthetic practices and language policies.

Obituary: Sabah Kharrat Zouein (December 8, 1954 – June 5, 2014)

Sabah Kharrat Zouein, August 2013 at the CITL library in Arles

Sabah Kharrat Zouein, August 2013 at the CITL library in Arles

The OIB is saddened to learn of the untimely death of Sabah Kharrat Zouein, an outstanding Lebanese poetess and literary critic who succumbed to a serious illness in early June, at the age of fifty-nine. Sabah was a friend of the OIB since the late 1990s. Working as a literary and cinema critic for Beirut’s daily an-Nahār and widely praised for the innovative prose poetry of her book Al-Bait al-mā’il (1995), Sabah was first ‘discovered’ for the institute by former OIB director Angelika Neuwirth who invited her in 1997 to the OIB’s recital series “Portfolio – Beiruti authors read their favorite texts”. Her seminal lecture “The multi-dimensional body in writing: Eros, sin and death” was a highlight of the OIB’s international Symposium “Ghazal as a genre of world literature” in July 1999. Her essay “Passion de l’écriture” was published in the OIB’s Festschrift for John Donohue (From Baghdad to Beirut: Arab and Islamic Studies in honor of John J. Donohue s.j., ed. by Leslie Tramontini and Chibli Mallat, Beirut 2007, BTS, vol. 108). She contributed also to the institute’s research focus on “Modern Arab Poetry”, launched by former OIB research associate Arnim Heinemann, especially in the framework of the international poetry translation project “Verstransfer Beirut-Berlin” (2007) in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut and the “Literaturwerkstatt Berlin”.

Humble and always ready to help, she was a goldmine of information for students of modern Arab literature who came to Beirut for field research. Her work and career are reviewed in two OIB related manuals: Agonie und Aufbruch: neue libanesische Prosa, ed. by Angelika Neuwirth and Andreas Pflitsch (Beirut: Dergham, 2000), and Crosshatching in global culture: A dictionary of modern Arab writers, ed. by John J. Donohue, SJ, and Leslie Tramontini (Beirut: OIB, 2004; BTS, vol. 101).

In 2005 she left an-Nahār and continued to work as a prolific free-lance literary critic, translator, and poetess. Facing many challenges in her professional life, but endowed with enormous energy, an exemplary working ethos, and an outstanding talent to feel and write in several languages, she was able to publish between 2006 and 2013, apart from her work as a translator, four new poetry books in Arabic and four anthologies of current Lebanese poetry in French, Spanish, and Arabic. Frequently invited to poetry events and public talks abroad and at home, she wrote, inter alia, for al-Quds al-‘Arabī (London), as-Safīr (Beirut), Nizwā (Oman), and had, from 2009-2013, a weekly column in al-Liwā’ (Beirut). Her last poetry book, ‘Indamā al-dhākira, wa indamā ‘atabāt ash-shams, illustrated by the Lebanese painter Amīn al-Bāshā, came out in November 2013, only a few weeks before her terminal illness prevented her from continuing her poetic ‘journey’ through life.

Her voice has now fallen silent, but her work will survive her. Those who had the chance to know her in person will remember her kindness, loyalty, humbleness, vast knowledge, and engaging curiosity. Those who had the chance to read and study her work will also deplore the loss of so many books, verses, and thoughts that now will remain unwritten.

Thomas Scheffler

Frank Walter Steinmeier zu Besuch am OIB

Außenminister Frank Walter Steinmeier und Stefan Leder, Direktor des Orient-Instituts Beirut

Außenminister Frank Walter Steinmeier und Stefan Leder, Direktor des Orient-Instituts Beirut

Der deutsche Außenminister Frank-Walter Steinmeier und Mitglieder seiner Delegation sprachen am 30. Mai 2014 im Orient-Institut Beirut mit libanesischen Gästen über die desolate Lage in Syrien und ihre Auswirkungen auf den Libanon. Der Libanon war das erste Ziel auf Steinmeiers Reise durch Nahen Osten, die er am vergangenen Freitag antrat.

Die libanesischen Gesprächsteilnehmer machten sehr deutlich, dass konfessionelle Polarisierung, Gewalt und Angst das Zusammenleben zwischen Christen und Muslimen erschweren und gefährden würden. Christen sähen aber weiterhin ihre Heimat und Zukunft in der Region. Dass die religiöse und kulturelle Vielfalt im arabischen Osten dringend erhalten werden müsse, darüber waren sich alle Seiten einig. Die Zivilgesellschaft vor Ort und die internationale Gemeinschaft könnten gemeinsam dafür eintreten. Von libanesischer Seite hieß es, auf ein Einlenken der Konfliktparteien in Syrien könne man nicht hoffen, solange das Geschehen durch einen komplizierten Stellvertreterkrieg bestimmt sei. Für diesen müsse zunächst eine politische Lösung mit den in Syrien kriegführenden Staaten gefunden werden. Um politische Veränderungen anzustoßen, seien zivilgesellschaftliche Initiativen und Entwicklungen wichtig, die im Libanon, unter Beteiligung der geflohenen Syrer und vereinzelt weiterhin auch in Syrien selbst auf Verständigung hinarbeiten müssten.

Stipendienausschreibung 2015/2016

Das Orient-Institut Beirut, ein Forschungsinstitut der bundesunmittelbaren Max Weber Stiftung, vergibt Stipendien für herausragende Forschungsvorhaben, vorzugsweise für Doktorandinnen und Doktoranden.

Voraussetzung für die Bewerbung ist ein abgeschlossenes Studium (Diplom, Magister) in Fächern, die der Orientalistik zuzuordnen sind oder einen eindeutigen Regionalbezug aufweisen. Es muss erkennbar sein, inwieweit der Forschungsaufenthalt am Institut oder in der Region für das Vorhaben förderlich ist.

Gute Arabischkenntnisse in Wort und Schrift werden vorausgesetzt. Erwartet wird aktive Teilnahme an den internen Kolloquien und thematisch einschlägigen wissenschaftlichen Veranstaltungen. Der Arbeitsort ist Beirut, Forschungsaufenthalte außerhalb des Libanon in der Region sind mit der Institutsleitung abzusprechen.

Das Stipendium beträgt € 1200,– monatlich. Gästezimmer können unter Umständen für zeitlich eng begrenzte Aufenthaltsdauern zur Verfügung gestellt werden (hierfür werden vom Stipendium € 300,– monatlich einbehalten). Für die Reisekosten bewilligen wir eine einmalige Reisekostenpauschale in Höhe von € 600,–.

Stipendien stehen ab 2015 zur Verfügung. Die Stipendiendauer beträgt maximal 12 Monate.

Die Bewerbungen müssen die folgenden Unterlagen enthalten:

  • Anschreiben
  • Lebenslauf
  • Beschreibung des Promotionsvorhabens (3-5 Seiten)
  • Empfehlungsschreiben eines Hochschullehrers
  • Kopie des Magisterzeugnisses bzw. des Diploms
  • Nachweis der Sprachkenntnisse

Die Bewerberin / der Bewerber wird gebeten, ihre Bewerbung bis zum 27.07.2014 zuzusenden an den

Direktor des Orient-Instituts Beirut

Herrn Prof. Dr. Stefan Leder

P.O.Box 11-2988

Beirut / Libanon

per E-Mail an dir@orient-institut.org