Center News

Professor of Political Science Dr. Ian Lustick discusses the "Two-State Solution" in the New York Times

MEC affiliated faculty Dr. Ian Lustic wrote an op-ed entitled the "Two-State Solution" published in New York Times on September 15, 2013. Dr. Lustic's article can be read at the following link.

New SAS Associate Dean for Graduate Studies Dr. Eve Troutt Powell discusses goals

Professor Eve Troutt Powell’s appointment as the School of Arts & Sciences Associate Dean for Graduate Studies went into effect on July 1. The Daily Pennsylvanian spoke with Dr. Troutt Powell to discuss her goals for her new role and her experience thus far. Here you can read her recent interview with the Daily Pennsylvania (interview link)

Dr. Vanessa Ogle Awarded Kluge Fellowship

Assistant Professor of History Vanessa Ogle has been awarded a Kluge Fellowship for 2013-2014. Funded by the Kluge Center at the Library of Congress, up to ten fellowships are awarded yearly to scholars conducting research in the humanities and social sciences, especially those whose studies are interdisciplinary, cross-cultural, or multilingual.

Ogle teaches and writes about international history, with a focus on interactions between Europe and the Middle East. Her first book, Contesting Time: The Global Struggle for Uniformity and its Unintended Consequences, follows European and American attempts to make clock times, calendars, and social time more uniform.

Ogle is currently working on Owning the Earth: The Struggle Over Natural Resources, a history of debates over who has the right to own and access resources like minerals, oil, and water. Other future projects include the history of Tangier from the 1880s to the 1960s, and a biography of Elisabeth Achelis, who toured the world to promote a standardized, neutral world calendar in the interwar years and after WWII.

2013 Janet Lee Stevens Award Winners

Congratulations to Katie Hickerson and Carolyn Brunelle, the winners of the 2013 Janet Lee Stevens Award. This award is given annually to graduate students in Arabic and Islamic Studies who, in addition to showing exceptional merit in their academic performance, fulfill the spirit of the award by working to improve relations with and understanding of the Arab world. Carolyn is a graduate student in the department of Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations, and Katie is completing her graduate studies in the History department.

MMES student receives CURF award

We are pleased to announce that Jacob Blumenfeld-Gantz, a minor in Modern Middle East Studies (MMES) has received the Thouron Award for the 2012-2013 program year. The award is administered by the the Center of Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF) at the University of Pennsylvania. CURF is dedicated to providing opportunites for undergraduate students to pursue independent research.

2013 MEC Undergraduate Essay Award Winner

Autumn Patterson, a senior Political Science major at the University of Pennsylvania, has been named the winner of the Middle East Center’s 2013 Undergraduate Essay Contest. Her composition, entitled All that Glitters is Not Gold: The Fate of Regime Change in Tunisia, Egypt, and Syria, examined the persistence of authoritarianism in these nations since the 2011 Arab Spring. Autumn is presently a research assistant for a book that explores the relationship between India and the United States. She possesses proficiency in Spanish, Turkish, Azerbaijani, and Pashto languages and was recently awarded a Thomas R. Pickering Undergraduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship. Upon completion of a graduate degree in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University, Autumn will join the Foreign Service of the United States.

Dr. Troutt-Powell named as the new Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in the School of Arts & Sciences

Please join us in congratulating Prof. Eve Troutt-Powell, who has been named as the new Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in the School of Arts & Sciences effective July 2013. We wish Prof. Troutt-Powell great success in her new position.

Dr. Troutt-Powell in an affiliated faculty member of the Middle East Center and current Graduate Chair in the History Deparmtent. She is a distinguished historian of the modern Middle East, with a special interest in the region's relationship with Africa. Her latest book is Tell This in my Memory: Stories of Enslavement in Egypt, Sudan and the Ottoman Empire (Stanford, 2012). She has been a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and in 2003 was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow. Here at Penn she is a member of the Executive Committees of the Middle East Center and the Center for Africana Studies and is also currently a Penn Fellow.

University of Pennsylvania alumnus Max Reibman has written an article on Egypt's economy and diminishing foreign reserves. It was published recently for Carnegie's Sada Journal and be found at this link:

Max Reibman holds a B.A. in History from the University of Pennsylvania, from which he graduated in 2009, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. He earned an M.Phil in Historical Studies in 2010 from Cambridge, where he is now completing his PhD as a Gates Scholar. His main research interests are Egypt and the Middle East in the era of the First World War. He spent this past year in Egypt where he worked predominantly in the Egyptian National Archives and where he was an affiliated fellow at the American University in Cairo.


The Arts & Islamic Culture Program - Begins March 11, 2013

The upcoming "Arts and Islamic Culture" program this Spring, which is hosted at Camden County College's Blackwood Campus. Monday evenings: March 11, and April 15, 22, 29, and May 6, 2013 at 7 p.m. A pamphlet with information on the program and how to register is provided. PA teachers seeking ACT 48 credits will be able to do so through the Penn Museum (more information is included in the pamphlet). NJ Professional Development credit is also offered.

This program is provided in cooperation with Camden County College, American Research Institute in Turkey, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and the Middle East Center.

A program link is available here:


We hope you will register for this great program.

Dr. Kashani-Sabet presents at the Bates Center Seminar Series
The Middle East Center director, Dr. Kashani-Sabet's talk gave a talk entitled "Breeding Women: Reproduction and Maternalist Politics in Iran". You will find more information on the Bates Centers website: