Skip to Content

Center for Middle Eastern Studies

This is an archived copy of the 2012-13 catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit


  • Fred M. Donner

Deputy Director

  • Franklin Lewis

Deputy Director for Academic Programs

  • Paul E. Walker

Associate Director

  • Thomas E. R. Maguire

Project Assistant

  • Traci Lombré

Outreach Coordinator

  • Alexander Barna

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations

  • Osama abu-Eledam
  • Helga Anetshofer
  • Kagan Arik
  • Orit Bashkin
  • Menachem Brinker (Emeritus)
  • Richard L. Chambers (Emeritus)
  • Robert Dankoff (Emeritus)
  • Fred M. Donner
  • Peter Dorman (Emeritus)
  • Muhammad Eissa
  • Ahmed El Shamsy
  • Ariela Finkelstein
  • Cornell Fleischer
  • Noha Aboulmagd Forster
  • Saeed Ghahremani
  • McGuire Gibson
  • Norman Golb
  • Gene B. Gragg
  • Hripsime Haroutunian
  • Kay Heikkinen
  • Halil Inalcik (Emeritus)
  • Janet H. Johnson
  • Wadad Afif Kadi (Emerita)
  • Hakan Karateke
  • Carolyn G. Killean (Emerita)
  • Franklin Lewis
  • Heshmat Moayyad (Emeritus)
  • Farouk Mustafa
  • Dennis G. Pardee
  • John R. Perry (Emeritus)
  • Tahera Qutbuddin
  • Na'ama Rokem
  • Holly Shissler
  • Jaroslav Stetkevych (Emeritus)
  • Matthew W. Stolper
  • Paul E. Walker
  • Donald Whitcomb
  • Aslihan K. Yener


  • Kathleen Morrison
  • Hussein Agrama

Art History

  • Persis Berlekamp


  • Marvin Zonis (Emeritus)


  • Michael Fishbane
  • Joel Kraemer (Emeritus)
  • Bruce Lincoln
  • Paul Mendes-Flohr
  • Michael Sells

Geographical Studies

  • Marvin W. Mikesell


  • Ralph A. Austen (Emeritus)
  • Walter E. Kaegi
  • John E. Woods
  • Bernard Wasserstein


  • Gidon A.G. Gottlieb (Emeritus)


  • Eric P. Hamp (Emeritus)


  • Philip Bohlman

Political Science

  • Iza Hussin
  • John Mearsheimer
  • Robert Pape
  • Ronald Suny (Emeritus)
  • Lisa Wedeen

Slavic Languages and Literatures

  • Victor Friedman

South Asian Languages and Civilizations

  • Muzaffar Alam

Since its establishment in 1965, the mandate of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies has been to coordinate, stimulate, and encourage academic, extracurricular, and outreach activities relating to the study of North Africa, Western Asia, Central Asia, and the Islamic World.

In fulfillment of this mission, the Center funds and administers a wide variety of programs and projects. At the undergraduate level, CMES ensures the availability of elementary and intermediate language courses and seeks to enhance their quality. In addition, CMES has taken the lead in helping to develop new non language courses in the College. The Center is a designated National Resource Center funded by the Department of Education; this funding includes Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowships. Graduates of the doctoral programs in Middle Eastern studies at Chicago continue to achieve recognition nationally and to find placement in the finest institutions of higher learning in the United States and abroad. The Center coordinates and sponsors a lecture series, several film series, current events forums and the student organized and administered Middle East History and Theory Workshop and Conference. Finally, the ultimate goal is to produce American experts in and citizens knowledgeable about the Middle East, its languages, and international affairs, as well as to build and maintain a strong research base in these areas.

The Center administers two joint programs through the Division of the Social Sciences, Chicago Booth School of Business, and the Harris School of Public Policy Studies. Students interested in this option should refer to the Social Sciences Announcement for further details.

The Center also administers an interdisciplinary Master of Arts program in Middle Eastern Studies. For information on the M.A. program, please see the entries under either the Social Sciences or the Humanities Master of Arts programs.

Virtually all the disciplines in the humanities and social sciences are represented in Middle East programs of study. Ten languages of the ancient Middle East are taught and 12 of the classical and modern periods. Most of the distinguished faculty hold appointments in one or more departments or schools. The interdisciplinary, comparative, and innovative approaches to knowledge and learning pioneered at Chicago profoundly inform the language and area studies programs at the University. This feature of the curriculum has been significantly strengthened by the creation of the Foreign Language and Area Studies Council under the aegis of the Center for International Studies. Research in all spheres is powerfully supported by one of the finest library collections in North America.

Long a national model, the CMES public education program provides materials and services to educators, schools, community groups and cultural institutions, healthcare providers, businesses, and the media. To achieve this objective of service to the community most efficiently, we seek partnerships with likeminded organizations whose aims are consistent with our own goals of enhancing Americans' understanding of the nation’s global connections and its multicultural society through education and training on the Middle East and the Islamic World.