News & Events
section1 center image

The Middle East Center at Penn sponsors and supports programs and initiatives across the disciplines and professional schools, and runs a dynamic outreach program in the Delaware Valley. Faculty and students at Penn are also active and prominent in the field of Middle East studies, making significant and highly regarded contributions to scholarly output in their areas of interest. We will continue to update news of the Center's activities and highlight the achievements of our faculty and students here.

Dr. Jamal Elias, Dr. Cheikh Babou, and Mr. Juan Castrillon The Middle East Center and Center for Civic Leadership and Responsibility at Camden County College are happy to present: “Addressing Islamophobia in K-12 Education: a Workshop for Teachers". The workshop will take place Tuesday, June 27th between 9:00-3:30pm in Connector Building (Room 101) Camden Community College, Blackwood Campus. Dr. Jamal Elias, Dr. Cheikh Babou, and the Ethno-Musicologist Juan Castrillon, all three from the University of Pennsylvania, will give lectures and performances on how to address Islamophobia in the classroom. Participation is free but registration is required since space is limited. Teachers are eligible to receive a stipend of $150 along with instructional material from Brown’s Choices Program and New Jersey Professional Development Credit. To receive the stipend teachers are required to submit a lesson plan based on the material presented in the program within a week of the conclusion of the program. For more information and to register please find the flyer and the registration form below. The deadline for registration is May 31. Please email your registration forms to Valerie Concordia at
Connector Building Room 101 Camden County College, Blackwood Campus, NJ
Dr. Salam al-Kuntar and Nimrod Ben-Zeev, Ph.D. candidate Dr. Salam Al-Kuntar and Nimrod Ben-Zeev will present lectures on migration in Iraq, Syria and Israel. The presentations will focus on both the present-day situation, as well as the history of migration in these regions. Dr. Salam Al-Kuntar is a Penn Museum Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Department of Anthropology. Her research interests include forced migration, near eastern archaeology, and human mobility and cultural boundaries. She will provide an insightful lecture entitled, “Displacement and Forced Migration of Syrians and Iraqis: Cultural Impacts in the Middle East and Beyond”. Nimrod Ben-Zeev is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of History at the University of Pennsylvania. His research is focused on the ways in which inequalities are produced through the intersections of construction, the built environment and the body. He will present a lecture titled, “Mizrahi Jews in Israel: History, Struggle and Identity”.
Camden Community College
The University of Pennsylvania’s National Resource Centers present the Global Summer Institute 2017. This year’s Summer Institute, which is titled Legendary Empires: Power, People and Politics, will take place July 17-21, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm at the Carriage House, University of Pennsylvania, 3907 Spruce St, Philadelphia, PA 19104 except for July 18, which will take place at Penn Museum, 9:00 – 4:00 pm, 3260 South St, Philadelphia, PA 19104.  The Global Summer Institute is a five-day K-12 teacher training organized by the University of Pennsylvania’s National Resource Centers focusing on global education. This year’s theme will focus on creative interpretations of “empire,” exploring fabled kings and queens, dynasties that reshaped landscapes, colonial rulers and modern empires. The Summer Institute is a five-days teacher training program jointly organized by Penn National Resource and Area Studies Centers, Penn Museum, and Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture. A full itinerary of the Summer Institute will be made available to participants, but the topics and themes that will be covered during the each day of the Institute is as follows: The program for Monday July 17 will feature lectures by Brian Spooner, Professor in Anthropology at University of Pennsylvania, and Tuna Artun who is an Assistant Professor in History at Rutgers University. Professor Spooner will give an overview of Middle Eastern Empires focusing on the Achaemenians, Parthians, Sasanians, and the Persianate administrations of the eastern Islamic world from the Taherids in Nishapur (starting in 821) to the Ottomans, Mughals and Qajars in the late medieval and early modern periods. Professor Spooner will also provide an account how the Colonial Empires affected the Middle East and the consequences in modern time. Professor Artun will give a presentation on the Ottoman Empire as world history. Monday July 2017 will also feature lectures and performances by Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture. Ellen Owens, Director of Learning Programs at Penn Museum, Hitomi Yoshida, the Diversity Programs Manager at Penn Museum, and Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture, will curate the program for Tuesday July 18, which will take place at Penn Museum. This day will feature lectures, performances and museum visits. Wednesday July 19 will feature a tour of the Philadelphia Museum of Modern Art’s new South Asia Gallery as well as lectures by Devan Patel, Associate Professor of South Asia Studies, Megan Robb, Assistant Professor of South Asian Religions, and speakers from the Center of Africana Studies. Professor Patel’s lecture will focus on Hindu and Buddhist Empires, while Professor Robb’s lecture will address Muslim Empires in South Asia. Thursday July 20 will feature lectures by Dr. Mitch Fraas, Curator of Special Collections, Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library, David Dettman, Associate Director of the Center for East Asian Studies, Daud Ali, Associate Professor of South Asia Studies and speakers from the Center of Africana Studies. Dr. Fraas’ lecture will demonstrate how primary sources can be used to teach Empire in India, while David Dettman’s lecture will focus on empires in Korea and Mongolia. Professor Ali’s lecture will focus on colonialism in South Asia. Thursday July 20 will also feature a Teacher Reflection and Talk Back led by Sarah Sharp.    Registration is free: Participants receive ACT 48 credit and a $ 100 stipend for attendance and completion of all workshops. Apply at  Application deadline: Wednesday, May 31, 2017  We hope to see you there!
University of Pennsylvania, Carriage House, Penn Museem