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Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations

http://nelc.uchicago.edu/

Chair

  • Franklin D. Lewis

Professors

  • Orit Bashkin
  • Fred M. Donner
  • Cornell Fleischer
  • McGuire Gibson, Oriental Institute
  • Janet H. Johnson, Oriental Institute
  • Hakan Karateke
  • Dennis G. Pardee
  • Robert K. Ritner, Oriental Institute
  • Martha T. Roth, Oriental Institute
  • Gil Stein, Oriental Institute
  • Theo P. van den Hout, Oriental Institute
  • John E. Woods, History

Associate Professors

  • Ahmed El Shamsy
  • Petra Goedegebuure, Oriental Institute
  • Rebecca Hasselbach, Oriental Institute
  • Nadine Moeller, Oriental Institute
  • Brian Muhs, Oriental Institute
  • Richard Payne, Oriental Institute
  • Tahera Qutbuddin
  • Na'ama Rokem
  • David Schloen, Oriental Institute
  • A. Holly Shissler
  • Sofía Torallas Tovar, Classics
  • Christopher Woods, Oriental Institute

Assistant Professors

  • Ghenwa Hayek
  • James Osborne, Oriental Institute
  • Susanne Paulus, Oriental Institute
  • Hervé Reculeau, Oriental Institute
  • Johh Z. Wee, Oriental Institute

Senior Lecturers

  • Ariela Almog
  • Saeed Ghahremani

Lecturers

  • Osama Abu-Eledam
  • Helga Anetshofer-Karateke
  • Kagan Arik
  • Lakhdar Choudar
  • Stuart Creason
  • Noha Forster
  • Saeed Ghahremani
  • Hripsime Haroutunian
  • Kay Heikkinen

Research Associates (Associate Professors)

  • W. Raymond Johnson, Oriental Institute
  • Donald S. Whitcomb, Oriental Institute

Emeritus Faculty

  • Lanny D. Bell, Oriental Institute
  • Robert D. Biggs, Oriental Institute
  • Menachem Brinker
  • John A. Brinkman, Oriental Institute
  • Richard L. Chambers
  • Miguel Civil, Oriental Institute
  • Robert Dankoff
  • Peter F. Dorman, Oriental Institute
  • Walter T. Farber, Oriental Institute
  • Gene B. Gragg, Oriental Institute
  • Norman Golb
  • Harry A. Hoffner, Oriental Institute
  • Halil Inalcik, History
  • Wadad Kadi
  • Heshmat Moayyad
  • John R. Perry
  • Jaroslav Stetkevych
  • Matthew W. Stolper, Oriental Institute
  • William Sumner, Oriental Institute
  • Edward F. Wente, Oriental Institute
  • K. Aslihan Yener, Oriental Institute

The Department

The work of the department encompasses the ancient civilizations of the Near East, Near Eastern Judaica, and the Islamic civilizations of the Middle East, including Egypt and North Africa, and the history, languages, and literatures of the modern Middle East.

The fields of study in which M.A. and Ph.D. programs are currently offered are, in the Ancient Section: Ancient Near Eastern History, Comparative Semitics, Cuneiform Studies (Assyriology, Hittitology, Sumerology), Egyptology, Hebrew Bible and the Ancient Near East, Near Eastern Art and Archaeology (Anatolian, Egyptian, Iranian, Islamic, Mesopotamian, Syro-Palestinian), Near Eastern Judaica, and Northwest Semitic Philology; and in the Medieval and Modern Section: Arabic Language and Literature, Islamic History and Civilization, Islamic Thought, Medieval Judaica and Judeo- Arabic, Modern Hebrew Language and Literature, Persian Language and Literature, and Ottoman and Turkish Studies. The department also has a joint program with Linguistics and offers courses in Armenian and Central Asian studies in collaboration with other departments at the University.

The department has two main objectives. First, it strives to provide the specific course work and training needed for its students to develop into outstanding scholars in their chosen fields. Second, it offers more general courses that provide its students a broader background in areas outside their specific fields while presenting students in other departments the opportunity to incorporate relevant Middle Eastern material into their own studies. The department also publishes the Journal of Near Eastern Studies, one of the leading academic journals in ancient Near Eastern and Islamic studies.

The Oriental Institute

The department is associated with the Oriental Institute, a research institute dedicated to the study of the origin and development of civilization in the ancient Near East. The Institute maintains several expeditions in the field, and research projects are carried on in its headquarters at the University. Its research archives, manuscript collection, documents from Oriental Institute excavations, and similar materials are resources for the students in the department. The department’s office is housed in the Oriental Institute building, and many of its members belong to the faculty of the Oriental Institute.

The Center for Middle Eastern Studies

The department is also associated with the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, which offers a master’s degree in Middle Eastern studies and coordinates activities at the University dealing with the Middle East in the Islamic and modern periods. Many members of the department faculty are also members of the Center’s executive committee; and the workshops, lectures, language circles, and similar activities of the Center are, like those of the Oriental Institute, a resource for the students in the department.

The Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Students with an undergraduate degree may apply directly to the department’s Ph.D. program; a master’s degree in a related field is not prerequisite. The department does not admit students for a terminal M.A. degree, although work done in the first two years of the Ph.D. program qualifies students to receive an M.A. degree. This interim M.A. normally requires the completion of 18 courses, of which 15 must be taken for a quality grade while three may be taken on a pass/fail basis. All students must high pass one of the two required modern research language reading exams (typically French and German) before the beginning of their second year and complete an M.A. thesis in the second year.

At the end of the second year, all students are reviewed and a determination made as to whether they will be allowed to continue in the Ph.D. program. Students who do continue build upon the work used for the M.A. degree; normally the completion of additional 9-18 courses is required, depending on the field, before embarking upon research for the doctoral dissertation. Exact requirements vary by field, but all students must high pass their second modern research language reading exam before the beginning of their third year and pass a battery of comprehensive exams, usually at the end of their fourth year. A dissertation proposal of original research to be undertaken is presented to the faculty at a public hearing, usually in the fifth year; acceptance allows the student to be admitted to candidacy and to continue the research that will lead to the completed dissertation. A formal dissertation defense is required before the Ph.D. degree is awarded.  For more information, please consult the NELC Rules & Requirements.

Because the department believes that firsthand knowledge and experience of the Middle East are an essential part of a student’s training, advanced students are encouraged to apply for grants to support study in a Middle Eastern country, whether for language acquisition, archaeological field work, or dissertation research.

Inquiries

Specific information about the department and its programs may be obtained from our website (http://nelc.uchicago.edu/) or by e-mail (ne-lc@uchicago.edu). Within the framework outlined above, individual requirements are established for each student in consultation with the faculty adviser and the section counselor.

Application

The application process for admission and financial aid for all graduate programs in the Division of the Humanities is administered through the divisional Office of the Dean of Students. The Application for Admission and Financial Aid, with instructions, deadlines and department-specific information is available online at http://humanities.uchicago.edu/students/admissions.

Questions pertaining to admissions and aid should be directed to humanitiesadmissions@uchicago.edu or (773) 702-1552.

Foreign students must provide evidence of English proficiency by submitting scores from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

We encourage you to check our website at http://nelc.uchicago.edu/ particularly with regard to determining your field of study for your application. The application form has a place to indicate the department/program; from the pull down menu choose Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. For field of specialization, please be sure to enter one of the fields of study exactly as listed on NELC’s web page. We need these fields to sort information in our database. You may wish to specify your area of interest further in your statement of purpose.

Courses

Modern Languages: Language acquisition is taught at the elementary and intermediate levels in modern Arabic, Armenian, Hebrew, Kazakh, Persian, Turkish, and Uzbek with advanced level courses in Arabic, Hebrew, and Turkish. A wide variety of literature courses are taught in the various languages.

Ancient Languages: Courses are offered in the fundamentals of Akkadian, Ancient Anatolian Languages, Egyptian, Ge’ez, Classical Hebrew, Sumerian, and Ugaritic, while more advanced courses cover specific genres of ancient texts dealing with religion, medicine, law, government, history, etc.

Near Eastern Art and Archaeology: Courses in Anatolian, Egyptian, Islamic, Mesopotamian, and Syro-Palestinian art and archaeology offer grounding in site archaeology and the material culture of the ancient Near East and include instruction on archaeological method and theory, landscape archaeology, computer applications, etc.

Near Eastern History and Civilization: A wide variety of courses cover the history, religion, law, literature (in translation), culture, and thought of the many ancient and modern civilizations of this region.

Please see the University’s Class Search for the most up-to-date and specific course offerings in a given quarter.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Akkadian Courses

AKKD 30811. Akkadian Astronomical Texts. 100 Units.

This course surveys the wide variety of cuneiform astronomical-astrological texts, including the astronomical diaries, ephemerides, goal-year texts, almanacs, astrolabes, horoscopes, and omen series. Students consider the idea of time, the conception of the sky, implications of the Zodiac and Micro-zodiac, and the relationship between celestial observation and theory.

Instructor(s): John Wee     Terms Offered: Spring

AKKD 30820. Readings in the letters from Tell el-Amarna. 100 Units.

In this course, we will read Akkadian letters from the correspondence found at Tell el-Amarna, Egypt, that date to the 14th century BCE. We will read letters from various locations, including Babyonia, Assyria, Mitanni and Hatti, although the main focus of the class will be on the letters sent from Canaan. In all these corpora we will look at features that mark the language as different from core Babylonian and that reveal substrate influence from the native languages of the scribes.

Instructor(s): Rebecca Hasselbach-Andee     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Advanced knowledge of Akkadian. Knowledge of Hebrew or Aramaic would be an asset.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Ancient Anatolian Languages Courses

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Arabic Courses

ARAB 30201-30202-30203. High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic I-II-III.

This is a three course sequence in High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic.

ARAB 30201. High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic I. 100 Units.

This is a three course sequence in High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic.

Instructor(s): N. Forster     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 20103 or equivalent
Note(s): Open to qualified undergraduates with consent of the instructor

ARAB 30202. High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): N. Forster     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 30201 or equivalent

ARAB 30203. High Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic III. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): N. Forster     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 30202 or equivalent

ARAB 30301-30302-30303. High Intermediate Classical Arabic I-II-III.

This is a three-segment course offered in three quarters; Autumn, Winter and Spring. The main objective of the complete three segment is to develop strong pedagogical strategies in the four Arabic language skills to acquire proficiency in handling Arabic classical texts. By the end of the three quarters students should  know the distinctive features of classical Arabic texts and the various genres and sources of such texts. They will build strong command on expanded grammatical features and structural rules governing classical texts of different variations. Students will be able to produce written documents reflecting reading comprehension, personal opinions and text critique. Students should be able to make oral presentation and conduct research using electronic resources as well as traditional classical sources. The class is conducted entirely in Arabic with occasional use of English in translation and explanation of complex cultural and linguistic issues.

ARAB 30301. High Intermediate Classical Arabic I. 100 Units.

This is a three-segment course offered in three quarters; Autumn, Winter and Spring. The main objective of the complete three segment is to develop strong pedagogical strategies in the four Arabic language skills to acquire proficiency in handling Arabic classical texts. By the end of the three quarters students should  know the distinctive features of classical Arabic texts and the various genres and sources of such texts. They will build strong command on expanded grammatical features and structural rules governing classical texts of different variations. Students will be able to produce written documents reflecting reading comprehension, personal opinions and text critique. Students should be able to make oral presentation and conduct research using electronic resources as well as traditional classical sources. The class is conducted entirely in Arabic with occasional use of English in translation and explanation of complex cultural and linguistic issues.

Instructor(s): K. Heikkinen     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 20103 or equivalent

ARAB 30302. High Intermediate Classical Arabic II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): K. Heikkinen     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 30201 or equivalent

ARAB 30303. High Intermediate Classical Arabic III. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): K. Heikkinen     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 30302 or equivalent

ARAB 30390. Arabic in Social Context. 100 Units.

Designed for the advanced student of MSA, this course aims to improve listening comprehension and instill an awareness of the social associations accompanying different speech/writing styles. Students will intensively listen to  audio /video materials  clustered around the themes of diglossia and code-switching; gendered discourse; urban-rural; class. A heavily aural course, class activities will involve student presentations (group and solo), discussion groups, and to a lesser degree, textual analysis.

Instructor(s): N. Forster     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): 3 years of Arabic or consent of instructor
Note(s): This course is open to qualified undergraduate students

ARAB 30551. History and Modern Arabic Literature. 100 Units.

The class studies historical novels and the insights historians might gain from contextualizing and analyzing them. The Arab middle classes were exposed to a variety of newspapers and literary and scientific magazines, which they read at home and in societies and clubs, during the late nineteenth century and the early twentieth. Such readers learned much about national identity, gender relations and Islamic reform from historical novels popularized in the local press.  Some of these novels were read not only by adults, but also by children, and consequently their ideas reached a very large audience. The novels’ writers paid great attention to debates concerning political theory and responded to discourses that were occurring in the public spheres of urban Middle East centers and, concurrently, appropriated and discussed themes debated among Orientalists and Western writers. The class will explore these debates as well as the connections between the novel and other genres in classical Arabic literature which modern novels hybridized and parodied.  It will survey some of the major works in the field, including historical novels by Gurji Zaydan, Farah Antun, Nikola Haddad, and Nagib Mahfuz.

Instructor(s): O. Bashkin     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Reading knowledge of Arabic (namely three years of Arabic at least) is required; students are expected to read the novels as part of their homework assignment.
Note(s): Open to qualified undergraduates

ARAB 30680. Readings: Islamic Ritual Law. 100 Units.

Close reading of classical Arabic texts on ‘ibādāt / Islamic ritual law, with some discussion of concepts of ritual. 

Instructor(s): Donner, F.     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): 3rd year Arabic or instructor's permission.

ARAB 40015. Seminar on 'Afif al-Din al-Tilimsani. 100 Units.

This advanced reading seminar explores the mystico-philosophical writings of 'Afif al-Din al-Tilimsani (d. 690/1291), a sophisticated and understudied disciple of Ibn Arabi who wrote several important commentaries (shuruh) on major Sufi works. We will examine selections from five of his commentaries, including: (1) his Commentary on the Divine Names (available in manuscript), (2) Commentary on Surat al-Fatiha and al-Baqara (available in manuscript), (3) Commentary on Niffari's Mawaqif ("The Halting Places"), (4) Commentary on Harawi's Manazil al-sa'irin ("The Stations of the Wayfarers"), and (5) Commentary on Ibn 'Arabi's Fusus al-hikam ("The Ringstones of Wisdom"). We will also read selections from his Sufi poetry.

Instructor(s): Yousef Casewit     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Advanced Arabic is required.
Equivalent Course(s): ISLM 50010

ARAB 40101-40102. Advanced Arabic Syntax I-II.

This two-quarter sequence is an introduction to the classical Arabic language. It is useful for students whose research includes the reading of classical Arabic texts in varied fields such as literature, history, political science, theology and philosophy. In the class 1) rules of Arabic grammar are studied intensively, topic by topic; 2) parsing (i'rab) is an important component, with a view to understanding the structure of the language; 3) brief texts from different fields of classical Arabic are read focusing on their grammatical structure, and 4) some theory about the development of the grammatical genre is introduced, as are the basic features of prosody ('arud) and rhetoric (balagha).

ARAB 40101. Advanced Arabic Syntax I. 100 Units.

Advanced Arabic Syntax I

Instructor(s): T. Qutbuddin     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Three years (or equivalent) of Modern Standard Arabic. Open to grads and undergrads.

ARAB 40102. Advanced Arabic Syntax II. 100 Units.

Advanced Arabic Syntax II

Instructor(s): T. Qutbuddin     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARAB 40101 or equivalent. This is the second part of a 2 quarter sequence; open to grads and undergrads

ARAB 40200. Advanced Readings in Arabic. 100 Units.

Advanced Readings in Arabic

Instructor(s): Lakhdar Choudar, Noha Forster, Kay Heikkinen     Terms Offered: Autumn,Spring,Winter

ARAB 40250. The Literary Legacies of War in Lebanon. 100 Units.

In this course, we will investigate the historical, theoretical, and literary contexts and aftermaths of the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990). We will explore an array of texts from the war period, then a selection of texts written in the immediate post-war period, and in the post-post war moment. We will interrogate the manner in which these texts deal with complex issues of violence, trauma, and memory and post-memory while framing them within local and global debates around these themes. 

Instructor(s): Ghenwa Hayek     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Advanced Arabic

ARAB 40415. Arabic Palaeography and Epigraphy. 100 Units.

Close reading of classical Arabic texts on ‘ibādāt / Islamic ritual law, with some discussion of concepts of ritual.

Instructor(s): Fred Donner     Terms Offered: Spring. Spring 2017
Prerequisite(s): 3rd year Arabic or instructor's permission.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Aramaic Courses

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Armenian Courses

ARME 30101. Advanced Modern Armenian 1. 100 Units.

This three-quarter sequence enables the students to reach an advanced level of proficiency in the Armenian language. Reading, discussion and writing assignments include a selection of original Armenian literature and excerpts from mass media. A considerable amount of historical-political and social-cultural issues about Armenia are skillfully built into the course for students who have intention to conduct research in Armenian Studies and related area studies or to pursue work in Armenia. 

Instructor(s): H. Haroutunian     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ARME 20103 or equivalent.

ARME 30102. Advanced Modern Armenian 2. 100 Units.

This three-quarter sequence enables the students to reach an advanced level of proficiency in the Armenian language. Reading, discussion and writing assignments include a selection of original Armenian literature and excerpts from mass media. A considerable amount of historical-political and social-cultural issues about Armenia are skillfully built into the course for students who have intention to conduct research in Armenian Studies and related area studies or to pursue work in Armenia. 

Instructor(s): H. Haroutunian     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): ARME 30101 or equivalent.

ARME 30103. Advanced Modern Armenian 3. 100 Units.

This three-quarter sequence enables the students to reach an advanced level of proficiency in the Armenian language. Reading, discussion and writing assignments include a selection of original Armenian literature and excerpts from mass media. A considerable amount of historical-political and social-cultural issues about Armenia are skillfully built into the course for students who have intention to conduct research in Armenian Studies and related area studies or to pursue work in Armenia. 

Instructor(s): H. Haroutunian     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ARME 30102 or equivalent.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Egyptian Courses

EGPT 30120. Introduction to Demotic. 100 Units.

 This course provides a basic introduction to the grammar, vocabulary, and orthographic styles of the administrative and literary stage of the Egyptian language and script used in the Late Period (into the Roman Empire).

Instructor(s): J. Johnson     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): EGPT 10201 and/or EGPT 20210
Equivalent Course(s): ANCM 32100

EGPT 30121. Demotic Texts. 100 Units.

Building on the basic grammar, vocabulary, and orthographic styles learned in EGPT 30120, this course focuses on the reading and analysis of various Demotic texts.

Instructor(s): R. Ritner     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): EGPT 30120 or Consent of the Instructor

EGPT 40420. Texts from Expeditions. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): R. Ritner     Terms Offered: Winter

EGPT 49000. Thesis Research: Egyptology. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn 2013
Note(s): Select section from faculty list

EGPT 49900. Reading and Research: Egyptology. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Selection section from faculty list

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Elamite Courses

There are currently no courses offered in this subject.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Ge'ez Courses

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Hebrew Courses

HEBR 30501-30502-30503. Advanced Modern Hebrew I-II-III.

This course assumes that students have full mastery of the grammatical and lexical content at the intermediate level. However, there is a shift from a reliance on the cognitive approach to an emphasis on the expansion of various grammatical and vocabulary-related subjects. Students are introduced to sophisticated and more complex syntactic constructions, and instructed how to transform simple sentences into more complicated ones. The exercises address the creative effort on the part of the student, and the reading segments are longer and more challenging in both style and content. The language of the texts reflects the literary written medium rather than the more informal spoken style, which often dominates the introductory and intermediate texts.

HEBR 30501. Advanced Modern Hebrew I. 100 Units.

This course assumes that students have full mastery of the grammatical and lexical content at the intermediate level. However, there is a shift from a reliance on the cognitive approach to an emphasis on the expansion of various grammatical and vocabulary-related subjects. Students are introduced to sophisticated and more complex syntactic constructions, and instructed how to transform simple sentences into more complicated ones. The exercises address the creative effort on the part of the student, and the reading segments are longer and more challenging in both style and content. The language of the texts reflects the literary written medium rather than the more informal spoken style, which often dominates the introductory and intermediate texts.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): HEBR 20503 or equivalent

HEBR 30502. Advanced Modern Hebrew II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): HEBR 30501 or consent of instructor

HEBR 30503. Advanced Modern Hebrew III. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): HEBR 30502 or consent of instructor

HEBR 30601. Advanced Readings in Modern Hebrew. 100 Units.

Although this course assumes that students have full mastery of the grammatical and lexical content at the intermediate level, there is a shift from a reliance on the cognitive approach to an emphasis on the expansion of various grammatical and vocabulary-related subjects. After being introduced to sophisticated and more complex syntactic constructions, students learn how to transform simple sentences into more complicated ones. The exercises address the creative efforts of students, and the reading segments are longer and more challenging in both style and content. The language of the texts reflects the literary written medium rather than the more informal spoken style, which often dominates the introductory and intermediate texts.

Instructor(s): N. Rokem     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): HEBR 20503 or equivalent
Equivalent Course(s): JWSC 25601

HEBR 33300. Reading Modern Hebrew for Research Purposes. 100 Units.

Reading Hebrew for Reasearch Purposes is designed for students who already have a basic knowledge of modern or Biblical Hebrew (at least one first-year course) but want to build the reading fluency and comprehension ability necessary to use texts in their research. The course will include a comprehensive grammar survey along with vocabulary targeted to the specifics of formal, written Hebrew, and will also devote special attention to the particularities of individual students' fields of study. The goal of this course is for the students to read any text written in Modern Hebrew with a high level of confidence and comprehension. (Note:  This course does not emphasize official rules and forms of translation). Reading Hebrew for Research Purposes has a limited number of spots available for participation via electronic course sharing, intended for students who are unable to be in Chicago physically for the course.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Summer. Summer 2017 dates: 6/20/17-7/27/17
Prerequisite(s): Prerequisite: one year of Modern Hebrew, or at least one year of Biblical Hebrew with permission of the instructor.

HEBR 40410. Modern Hebrew Language in Israeli Media I. 100 Units.

The course includes readings in modern Hebrew prose, poetry and non-fiction; TV broadcasts and movies, with emphasis on cultural & social issues.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Spring

HEBR 40412. Modern Hebrew language in the Israeli Media III. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Hebrew 30105 or equivalent

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Kazakh Courses

KAZK 49900. Reading and Research. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn, Winter, Spring
Note(s): Select section from faculty list

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Near Eastern Art and Archaeology Courses

NEAA 30001. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East I: Mesopotamia. 100 Units.

This course surveys the archaeology and art of the Mesopotamia.

Instructor(s): M. Gibson     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This sequence does not meet the general education requirements in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20001

NEAA 30002. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East II: Anatolia. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): J. Osborne     Terms Offered: Not offered in 2017-18
Prerequisite(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence does not meet the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence does not meet the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20002

NEAA 30003. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East III: Levant. 100 Units.

No description available.

Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): This sequence does not meet the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20003

NEAA 30004. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East IV: Pre-Islamic Arabia. 100 Units.

No description available.

Terms Offered: Not offered in 2017-18
Note(s): This sequence does not meet the general education requirements in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20004

NEAA 30005. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East V: Islamic Period. 100 Units.

This survey of the regions of the Middle East presents the urban systems of each region. The focus is a comparative stratigraphy of the archaeological evidence and the contribution of this material towards an understanding of Islamic history and ancient archaeological periods in the Near East.

Instructor(s): D. Whitcomb     Terms Offered: Not offered in 2017-18
Note(s): This sequence does not meet the general education requirements in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20005

NEAA 30006. Archaeology of the Ancient Near East VI: Egypt. 100 Units.

This sequence provides a thorough survey in lecture format of the art and archaeology of ancient Egypt from the late Pre-dynastic era through the Roman period.

Instructor(s): N. Moeller     Terms Offered: Not offered in 2017-18
Note(s): This sequence does not meet the general education requirements in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20006

NEAA 30019. The Power and Problem of Maps. 100 Units.

This course explores maps as cultural documents and as objects that actively shape the territories and societies that they are created to represent, with material drawn primarily from the Middle East. We begin the quarter with a brief survey of the “Western” and Islamic cartographic perspectives and how these shaped pre-modern understandings of space and territory. We will then examine the role of maps and surveying in western imperial control in the Middle East. This section of the course will include hands-on research with paper and digital versions of historical maps held by various libraries on campus, including the Regenstein Map Collection and the Oriental Institute. Finally, we will examine recent indigenous reactions (in many parts of the world) against western cartographic perspectives and consider alternative ways of knowing and representing landscapes. 

Instructor(s): Emily Hammer     Terms Offered: Winter

NEAA 30035. Zooarchaeology. 100 Units.

This course introduces the use of animal bones in archaeological research. Students gain hands-on experience analyzing faunal remains from an archaeological site in the Near East. Topics include: (1) identifying, aging, and sexing animal bones; (2) zooarchaeological sampling, measurement, quantification, and problems of taphonomy; (3) computer analysis of animal bone data; and (4) reconstructing prehistoric hunting and pastoral economies (e.g., animal domestication, hunting strategies, herding systems, seasonality, pastoral production in complex societies).

Instructor(s): G. Stein     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Introductory course in archaeology
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20035

NEAA 30062. Ancient Landscapes II. 100 Units.

The landscape of the Near East contains a detailed and subtle record of environmental, social, and economic processes that have obtained over thousands of years. Landscape analysis is therefore proving to be fundamental to an understanding of the processes that underpinned the development of ancient Near Eastern society. This sequence provides an overview of the ancient cultural landscapes of this heartland of early civilization from the early stages of complex societies in the fifth and sixth millennia B.C. to the close of the Early Islamic period around the tenth century A.D.

Instructor(s): E. Hammer     Terms Offered: Winter

NEAA 30072. Water in the Middle East: Past & Present. 100 Units.

This course examines the distribution of water throughout the Middle East and the archaeology, anthropology, and history of water exploitation and management over the last 9,000 years. It will consider water in river valleys, deserts, highland zones, steppes, and coastal areas of Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Levant, and Arabia. The Middle East is an arid region, but dynamic human and natural systems have interacted to determine relative water scarcity and abundance at different times and places. These interrelated systems have also influenced the historical relationship between water control and political power. In the final weeks, we will discuss archaeology and historical anthropology’s contribution to conceptions of water “sustainability” and landscape “resilience.”

Instructor(s): E. Hammer     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Any introductory archaeology class in NELC, Anthropology, or other department
Equivalent Course(s): NEAA 20072

NEAA 30091. Field Archaeology. 300 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): N. Moeller     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This course is for students that will be overseas participating in an Archaeological Field Project. Consent of instructor required.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Near Eastern History and Civilization Courses

NEHC 30001. Ancient Near Eastern History and Society I: Egypt. 100 Units.

This course surveys the political, social, and economic history of ancient Egypt from pre-dynastic times (ca. 3400 B.C.) until the advent of Islam in the seventh century of our era.

Instructor(s): J. Johnson, B. Muhs     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): NEHC 20001

NEHC 30002. Ancient Near Eastern History and Society II: Mesopotamia. 100 Units.

This course provides an introduction to the social, political, and cultural history of Mesopotamia, from the origins of writing and cities in Sumer (ca. 3200 BC), through the great empires of Assyria, Babylon, and Persia.

Instructor(s): Herve Reculeau     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEHC 20002

NEHC 30004. Ancient Near Eastern Thought and Literature I: Mesopotamian Literature. 100 Units.

This course takes as its topic the literary tradition surrounding Gilgamesh, the legendary king of the Mesopotamian city-state of Uruk.  The course will focus on the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh and its Sumerian forerunners, and their cultural and historical contexts. We will also read a number of Sumerian and Akkadian compositions that are thematically related to the Gilgamesh tradition, including Atrahasis, the Sumerian Flood story, and the Epics of Enmerkar and Lugalbanda, also of first dynasty of Uruk.

Instructor(s): Chris Woods     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEHC 20004

NEHC 30005. Ancient Near Eastern Thought and Literature II: Anatolian Literature. 100 Units.

This course will provide an overview of Anatolian/Hittite literature, as “defined” by the Hittites themselves, in the wider historical-cultural context of the Ancient Near East. In the course of discussions, we will try to answer some important questions about Hittite inscriptions, such as: why were they written down, why were they kept, for whom were they intended, and what do the answers to these questions (apart from the primary content of the texts themselves) tell us about Hittite society? 

Instructor(s): H. Haroutunian     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies
Equivalent Course(s): NEHC 20005

NEHC 30011. Ancient Empires I. 100 Units.

This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies. This sequence introduces three great empires of the ancient world. Each course in the sequence focuses on one empire, with attention to the similarities and differences among the empires being considered. By exploring the rich legacy of documents and monuments that these empires produced, students are introduced to ways of understanding imperialism and its cultural and societal effects—both on the imperial elites and on those they conquered.

Instructor(s): H. Haroutunian     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): CLCV 25700,HIST 15602,NEHC 20011

NEHC 30012. Ancient Empires II: The Ottoman Empire. 100 Units.

no course description available at this time

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): CLCV 25800,HIST 15603,NEHC 20012

NEHC 30013. Ancient Empires III: The Egyptian Empire of the New Kingdom. 100 Units.

For most of the duration of the New Kingdom (1550–1069 BC), the ancient Egyptians were able to establish a vast empire and becoming one of the key powers within the Near East. This course will investigate in detail the development of Egyptian foreign policies and military expansion which affected parts of the Near East and Nubia. We will examine and discuss topics such as ideology, imperial identity, political struggle and motivation for conquest and control of wider regions surrounding the Egyptian state as well as the relationship with other powers and their perspective on Egyptian rulers as for example described in the Amarna letters.

Instructor(s): N. Moeller     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): CLCV 25900,HIST 15604,NEHC 20013

NEHC 30019. Mesopotamian Law. 100 Units.

NEHC 30019. Mesopotamian Law (= LLSO 20019; SIGN 26002). Ancient Mesopotamia -- the home of the Sumerians, Babylonians, and Assyrians who wrote in cuneiform script on durable clay tablets -- was the locus of many of history’s “firsts.” No development, however, may be as important as the formations of legal systems and legal principles revealed in contracts, trial records, and law collections (“codes”), among which “The Laws of Hammurabi” (r. 1792-1750 BC) stands as most important for understanding subsequent legal practice and thought of Mesopotamia’s cultural heirs in the Middle East and Europe until today. This course will explore the rich source materials of the Laws and relevant judicial and administration documents (all in English translations) to investigate topics of legal, social, and economic practice including family formation and dissolution, crime and punishment (sympathetic or talionic “eye for an eye,” pecuniary, corporal), and procedure (contracts, trials, ordeals). 

Instructor(s): Martha Roth     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): LLSO 20019,NEHC 20019,SIGN 26022

NEHC 30032. Imagining the Text: Books and Manuscripts in the Ancient ME. 100 Units.

 Imagining the Text: Books and Manuscripts in the Ancient ME

Instructor(s): Foy Scalf     Terms Offered: Winter

NEHC 30035. What is a Madrasa Education? 100 Units.

Although public education has almost completely eclipsed and replaced traditional educational systems throughout the Muslim world, madrasas continue to play a significant role in Muslim societies to this day. This course explores the complex, evolving, and often conflicting pedagogical models of learning in Islamic civilization from the medieval period up to the present. Three fundamental concerns guide our examination of the various modes of organization, acquisition, embodiment, and transference of knowledge in madrasa institutions:

,

(1) Epistemology: What is knowledge (ʿilm)? And what is an ʿālim, or “traditional Muslim knower” expected know?
,(2) Pedagogy: How does an ʿālim acquire, organize, transmit, and publish his/her ʿilm?
,(3) Religious Authority: How is ʿilm verified, authenticated, institutionalized, certificated, and mainstreamed in madrasa institutions? 

,

The sheer enormity of the subject and the variety of competing pedagogical models in the Muslim world belie a comprehensive survey. Our approach will thus be grounded in multidisciplinary research (history, ethnography, sociology, religious studies) and anchored in case studies. The readings covered in class will address questions of philosophy of education; the politics of knowledge; core texts studied in madrasas; day-to-day lived experience of students and teachers; how classical texts are taught; the struct

Instructor(s): Yousef Casewit     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Basic knowledge of Arabic or another Islamic language is highly recommended, though not a formal prerequisite for this course.
Equivalent Course(s): ISLM 30035

NEHC 30109. The Rise of Christianity in Iran. 100 Units.

The course will examine the emergence and evolution of Christianity in the Iranian Empire and neighboring societies in late antiquity. Normally studied in its Roman context, the expansion of the religion East of the Euphrates raises the problem of how Christian communities developed without a Constantine, that is, within a non-Christian, Zoroastrian empire. The seminar will provide an introduction to recent scholarship, literary sources in a variety of Near Eastern languages, and the archaeology of ecclesiastical institutions. It will debate how Christians adapted to an Iranian political, social, and economic order and how Zoroastrian elites accommodated them, as well as the attendant consequences for the histories of Iran and Christianity alike.

Instructor(s): R. Payne     Terms Offered: Spring

NEHC 30115. Iran and Turan. 100 Units.

The course will examine the encounter of the Near East with the economies, cultures, and political orders of Central Eurasia in late antiquity. With the rise of the Huns and the Turks, the Iranian Empire confronted nomadic imperialists that curtailed its ambitions in Central Asia and created trans-Eurasian networks. The seminar will provide an introduction to the relevant historical scholarship and literary and archaeological evidence. It will also debate fundamental historiographical questions, such as the nature of nomadic imperialism, the role of the so-called “Silk Road” in Near Eastern and Central Eurasian political economies, and the scope of trans-Eurasian cultural exchange.

Instructor(s): R. Payne     Terms Offered: Autumn

NEHC 30121. The Bible and Archaeology. 100 Units.

In this course we will look at how interpretation of evidence unearthed by archaeologists contributes to a historical-critical reading of the Bible, and vice versa. We will focus on the cultural background of the biblical narratives, from the stories of Creation and Flood to the destruction of the Jerusalem temple by the Romans in the year 70. No prior coursework in archaeology or biblical studies is required, although it will be helpful for students to have taken JWSC 20120 (Introduction to the Hebrew Bible).

Instructor(s): David Schloen     Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): This course may be used to fulfill the College’s general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): NEHC 20121,RLST 20408,JWSC 20121

NEHC 30355. Writing Systems and Decipherments. 100 Units.

This course surveys the ways in which humans make language visible.  Topics will include the typology of writing systems, including logographic, syllabic, and alphabetic systems, the invention and evolution of writing, as well as some of the social and cultural issues that are intertwined with scripts. The earliest pristine writing systems (Sumerian, Egyptian, Chinese, and Mayan) will be a major focus, as will be the invention of the alphabet.  We will also discuss notable modern decipherments  of ancient writing systems.

Instructor(s): Chris Woods     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): No prerequisites (enrollment limit dependent on room size)

NEHC 30406. Jewish Thought and Literature III: Biblical Voices in Modern Hebrew Literature. 100 Units.

The Hebrew Bible is the most important intertextual point of reference in Modern Hebrew literature, a literary tradition that begins with the (sometimes contested) claim to revive the ancient language of the Bible. In this course, we will consider the Bible as a source of vocabulary, figurative language, voice and narrative models in modern Hebrew and Jewish literature, considering the stakes and the implications of such intertextual engagement. Among the topics we will focus on: the concept of language-revival, the figure of the prophet-poet, revisions and counter-versions of key Biblical stories (including the story of creation, the binding of Isaac and the stories of King David), the Song of Songs in Modern Jewish poetry.

Instructor(s): N. Rokem     Terms Offered: Spring

NEHC 30416-30417-30418. Semitic Languages, Cultures, and Civilizations I-II-III.

This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.

NEHC 30416. Semitic Languages, Cultures, and Civilizations I. 100 Units.

This course looks at the earliest attestation of East Semitic as a language: Akkadian which was first written in the third millennium BC in Mesopotamia (modern Iraq). Akkadians were in close contact with Sumerians, the other important language of Mesopotamia, and adapted their script (cuneiform) to write a Semitic language. This course critically examines the connection between script, language, peoples, and ethnos. Furthermore, this course explores the political expansion of Akkadian in connection with the development of an early “empire” and the emergence of historical, legal, and literary traditions in Akkadian and its influence for the Ancient Near East and beyond. Texts covered included historical inscriptions, the Law Code of Hammu-râpi, Flood Stories, and divination texts (omina). Visits to the Oriental Institute Museum will complement the exploration of the Akkadian culture. Texts in English.

Instructor(s): S. Paulus     Terms Offered: Not offered 2017-18
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 15702,NEHC 20416

NEHC 30417. Semitic Languages, Cultures, and Civilizations II. 100 Units.

This course explores the historical evidence for several Semitic peoples who dwelled in Syria and Northern Iraq in the third to first millennia BCE (Eblaites, Amorites, Ugariteans, Assyrians). These peoples’ languages belong either to the larger group of Northwest Semitic, which comprises languages such as Aramaic and Canaanite (including Biblical Hebrew), or to the northern dialects of East Semitic. The shared characteristic of these people is to have recorded their cultural legacy on clay tablets, using Mesopotamian cuneiform or an alphabetic script adapted from it, noting either their own language or several aspects of their history, culture, and religion through a borrowed language (Akkadian). The course will focus on major cultural traditions that have echoes in younger records that came to be influential for the modern Middle East and for the Western world—especially the Hebrew Bible, but also some traditions of Pre-Islamic Arabia. This includes a close examination and discussion of representative ancient sources, as well as readings in modern scholarship. Ancient sources include literary, historical, and legal documents. Texts in English.

Instructor(s): H. Reculeau     Terms Offered: Not offered 2017-18
Note(s): Not open to first-year students
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 15703,NEHC 20417

NEHC 30418. Semitic Languages, Cultures, and Civilizations III. 100 Units.

This course explores the histories and literatures of Aramaic- and Arabic-writing Jewish, Christian, and Muslim communities in the first millennium CE. Beginning with the reception of Ancient Mesopotamian culture in late antiquity, the course will focus on the development of Syriac Christian, Rabbinic, and early Muslim sacred literatures in relation to the social, political, and economic contexts of the Roman and Iranian empires and inter-imperial Arabia. It will then turn to the literary and intellectual revival of the early Islamic caliphates, in which representatives of all three religions participated. Among the works to be read in translation are the Acts of Thomas, the Babylonian Talmud, the Qur’ān, and early Arabic poetry.

Instructor(s): R. Payne     Terms Offered: Not offered 2017-18
Note(s): Not open to first-year students.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 15704,NEHC 20418

NEHC 30462. Zionism and Culture. 100 Units.

An introduction to the Zionist movement through the lens of culture. What are the cultural context and conditions out of which the Zionist movement emerges and what are some of the cultural products and formations that emerge from it? What does "cultural Zionism" mean, and does it continue to be a relevant category? And how does this example help us thing about the relationship of culture and politics more broadly? Readings include: Theodor Herzl, Ahad Ha'am, A.B. Yehoshua, Edward Said and others.

Instructor(s): Na'ama Rokem     Terms Offered: Autumn

NEHC 30501. Islamic History and Society I: The Rise of Islam and the Caliphate. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 600 to 1100, including the rise and spread of Islam, the Islamic empire under the Umayyad and Abbasid caliphs, and the emergence of regional Islamic states from Afghanistan and eastern Iran to North Africa and Spain.

Instructor(s): F. Donner     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is recommended but not required. This sequence meets the general eduation requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 25704,HIST 35704,ISLM 30500,RLST 20501,NEHC 20501

NEHC 30502. Islamic History and Society II: The Middle Period. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 1100 to 1750, including the arrival of the Steppe Peoples (Turks and Mongols), the Mongol successor states, and the Mamluks of Egypt and Syria. We also study the foundation of the great Islamic regional empires of the Ottomans, Safavids, and Moghuls.

Instructor(s): J. Woods     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Not open to first-year students
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 25804,HIST 35804,ISLM 30600,NEHC 20502

NEHC 30503. Islamic History and Society III: The Modern Middle East. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 1750 to the present, focusing on Western military, economic, and ideological encroachment; the impact of such ideas as nationalism and liberalism; efforts at reform in the Islamic states; the emergence of the "modern" Middle East after World War I; the struggle for liberation from Western colonial and imperial control; the Middle Eastern states in the cold war era; and local and regional conflicts.

Instructor(s): A. Shissler     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Not open to first-year students
Note(s): This course does not apply to the medieval studies major or minor.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 25904,HIST 35904,ISLM 30700,NEHC 20503

NEHC 30504. Introduction to the Hebrew Bible. 100 Units.

The Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) is a complex anthology of disparate texts and reflects a diversity of religious, political, and historical perspectives from ancient Israel, Judah, and Yehud. Because this collection of texts continues to play an important role in modern religions, new meanings are often imposed upon it. In this course, we will attempt to read biblical texts apart from modern preconceptions about them. We will also contextualize their ideas and goals through comparison with texts from ancient Mesopotamia, Syro-Palestine, and Egypt. Such comparisons will demonstrate that the Hebrew Bible is fully part of the cultural milieu of the Ancient Near East. To accomplish these goals, we will read a significant portion of the Hebrew Bible in English, along with representative selections from secondary literature. We will also spend some time thinking about the nature of biblical interpretation.

Instructor(s): Jeffrey Stackert     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This course may be used to fulfill the College’s general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): BIBL 31000,JWSC 20120,NEHC 20504,RLST 11004

NEHC 30568. Balkan Folklore. 100 Units.

Vampires, fire-breathing dragons, vengeful mountain nymphs. 7/8 and other uneven dance beats, heart-rending laments, and a living epic tradition. This course is an overview of Balkan folklore from historical, political, and anthropological perspectives. We seek to understand folk tradition as a dynamic process and consider the function of different folklore genres in the imagining and maintenance of community and the socialization of the individual. We also experience this living tradition firsthand through visits of a Chicago-based folk dance ensemble, “Balkan Dance.”

Instructor(s): A. Ilieva     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 25908,ANTH 35908,CMLT 23301,CMLT 33301,NEHC 20568,REES 39009,REES 29009

NEHC 30589. Sefarad and Andalus: Jewish Thinkers in Islamic Spain. 100 Units.

The period known as “the Golden Age” in Islamic Spain is associated with some of the most famous names in Jewish thought, such as Maimonides or Judah Halevi. Through readings of individual thinkers in their cultural context, this course will study the emergence of Jewish thought in Islamic Spain (al-Andalus), and its development within and beyond its borders.

Instructor(s): Sarah Stroumsa     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Knowledge of foreign languages is not required (but readings can be adapted to students' individual skills).
Equivalent Course(s): HIJD 30589,ISLM 30589

NEHC 30601-30602-30603. Islamic Thought and Literature I-II-III.

This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies. Taking these courses in sequence is recommended but not required.

NEHC 30601. Islamic Thought and Literature I. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 600 to 950, concentrating on the career of the Prophet Muhammad; Qur‘an and Hadith; the Caliphate; the development of Islamic legal, theological, philosophical, and mystical discourses; sectarian movements; and Arabic literature.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): RLST 20401,SOSC 22000,HIST 25610,HIST 35610,ISLM 30601,NEHC 20601

NEHC 30602. Islamic Thought and Literature II. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 950 to 1700, surveying works of literature, theology, philosophy, sufism, politics, history, etc., written in Arabic, Persian and Turkish, as well as the art, architecture and music of the Islamicate traditions. Through primary texts, secondary sources and lectures, we will trace the cultural, social, religious, political and institutional evolution through the period of the Fatimids, the Crusades, the Mongol invasions, and the "gunpowder empires" (Ottomans, Safavids, Mughals).

Instructor(s): F. Lewis     Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): Taking these courses in sequence is recommended but not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): RLST 20402,SOSC 22100,ISLM 30602,CMES 30602,NEHC 20602

NEHC 30603. Islamic Thought and Literature III. 100 Units.

This course covers the period from ca. 1700 to the present, exploring works of Arab intellectuals who interpreted various aspects of Islamic philosophy, political theory, and law in the modern age. We look at diverse interpretations concerning the role of religion in a modern society, at secularized and historicized approaches to religion, and at the critique of both religious establishments and nation-states as articulated by Arab intellectuals. Generally, we discuss secondary literature first and the primary sources later.

Instructor(s): A. El Shamsy     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): This course does not apply to the medieval studies major or minor.
Equivalent Course(s): RLST 20403,SOSC 22200,NEHC 20603

NEHC 30605. Colloquium: Sources for the Study of Islamic History. 100 Units.

This course is designed to acquaint the student with the basic problems and concepts as well as the sources and methodology for the study of premodern Islamic history. Sources will be read in English translation and the tools acquired will be applied to specific research projects to be submitted as term papers.

Instructor(s): J. Woods     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 36005,NEHC 20605,HIST 26005

NEHC 30620. Reading Arabic Manuscripts. 100 Units.

Reading Arabic manuscripts is like riding a bicycle: one learns best through practice. In this spirit, the aim of this course is to introduce students to the precious collection of Arabic manuscripts at the Oriental Institute and to provide hands-on experience and skills for working with manuscripts. Guided by the interests of the participating students, we will explore the range of things one can do with manuscripts as historical artifacts – deciphering the script, editing the text, investigating the marginalia, reconstructing the libraries of individual collectors, and so on. The course is open to anyone with sufficient Arabic to read classical texts with a dictionary and the patience to stare at smudged handwriting for extended periods of time.    

Instructor(s): Ahmed El Shamsy     Terms Offered: Winter

NEHC 30625. Approaches to the Study of the Ancient Near East. 100 Units.

This is a required introductory course for all CMES ancient-track students

Instructor(s): B. Muhs     Terms Offered: Autumn

NEHC 30631. Approaches to the Study of the Middle East. 100 Units.

The course introduces beginning graduate students to the range of basic resources, methods, and analytical tools that must be mastered by those engaging in the study of the Islamic Middle East.  As such, it covers the period from the seventh century to the present and is focused on developing professional skills necessary for successful completion of a master's or doctoral program.

Instructor(s): P. Walker     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): CMES 30001

NEHC 30647. Topics in Medieval Islamic Social History. 100 Units.

Readings on diverse topics in medieval Islamic social history, including patterns of social organization; "tribes," "classes," and social strata; concepts of ethnicity; the role of pastoral nomadism; non-Muslim communities; women and gender; technology and social change; historical demography; urbanism; and environmental history. 

Instructor(s): Fred Donner     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Islamic History and Society 1 and 2 or equivalent

NEHC 30685. Art of the Book in the Islamic World. 100 Units.

This seminar offers an opportunity for in-depth consideration of methodological and theoretical issues as they pertain to the study of arts of the book in Islamic cultures. These include relationships between calligraphy, illumination, and painting; visual paradigms of authority from scribal culture to lithography; problems of copying and originality; challenges posed by manuscripts that have been altered by successive generations of users; multiple levels of text-image relationships; verbal and visual translation; and the history of arts of the book as a reference point for contemporary artists. Each student will write a research paper on a topic to be developed in consultation with the instructor.

Instructor(s): P. Berlekamp     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 42106

NEHC 30765. Introduction to the Musical Folklore of Central Asia. 100 Units.

This course explores the musical traditions of the peoples of Central Asia, both in terms of historical development and cultural significance. Topics include the music of the epic tradition, the use of music for healing, instrumental genres, and Central Asian folk and classical traditions. Basic field methods for ethnomusicology are also covered. Extensive use is made of recordings of musical performances and of live performances in the area.

Instructor(s): K. Arik     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 25905,EEUR 23400,EEUR 33400,MUSI 23503,MUSI 33503,NEHC 20765

NEHC 30853. Seminar: Ottoman World/Suleyman II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): C. Fleischer     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): NEHC 30852
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 58303

NEHC 30891-30892. Seminar: Introduction to the Ottoman Press I-II.

This is a 2-quarter research seminar.  Part 1 may be taken independently. Course introduces students to the historical context and specific characteristics of the mass printed press (newspapers, cultural and political journals, etc.) in the Ottoman Empire in the 19th C.  We will investigate issues such as content, censorship, production, readership and distribution through secondary reading and the examination of period publications.

NEHC 30891. Seminar: Introduction to the Ottoman Press I. 100 Units.

Course introduces students to the historical context and specific characteristics of the mass printed press (newspapers, cultural and political journals, etc.) in the Ottoman Empire in the 19th C.  We will investigate issues such as content, censorship, production, readership and distribution through secondary reading and the examination of period publications.  

Instructor(s): A. Shissler     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): This will be offered as a single term seminar. Knowledge of a relevant research language, (Ottoman Turkish, Armenian, Greek, Arabic, Ladino, French...) required.
Note(s): Open to undergraduates by permission.

NEHC 30892. Seminar: Introduction to the Ottoman Press II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): A. Shissler     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): NEHC 30891. Knowledge of a relevant research language, (Ottoman Turkish, Armenian, Greek, Arabic, Ladino, French...) required.
Note(s): Open to undergraduates by permission.

NEHC 30914. History of Turkey and Iran in the 20th century. 100 Units.

This course will offer a survey of the main political and social developments in Turkey and Iran since the end of WWI.

Instructor(s): Holly Shissler     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Some basic knowledge of modern Middle Eastern history suggested.

NEHC 30920. Arab America. 100 Units.

In this course, we will read a variety of texts that imagine or represent the Arab experience of exile to and diaspora within the United States, focusing on the ways that these texts re-construct and imagine the key dialectic of home/diasporic space, specifically within the framework of the complicated and dynamic relationship between the Arab world and the United States. Throughout the quarter, the readings would enable us to engage with several key concepts related to the Arab (and broader) immigrant experience in the US, including race, memory and nostalgia, language, and second-generational post-memory, as well as the role of the immigrant community in forming the ‘homeland’s’ vision of itself. We would begin with a historical overview of emigration from the Arabic-speaking world, beginning with the vast emigration of Lebanese and Syrians from Mount Lebanon and Syria in the mid-nineteenth century, but will pay particular attention to moments in which this identity has been or become particularly fraught, for example, following such events as the 1967 war, the 9/11 attacks, or the recent Executive Order by the Trump Administration (1/2017). 

Instructor(s): Ghenwa Hayek     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): SIGN 26026

NEHC 30937. Nationalism, Colonialism & Postcolonialism in the M.E. 100 Units.

The seminar covers the history of the region during the 19th and 20th centuries. It looks at how the modern historiography of modern Middle Eastern studies shaped, and was shaped by, post-colonial studies, subaltern studies, and historical perceptions of urbanity, modernity, Orientlaism, and class. The class will pay heed to the fluid and constructed nature of Arab national culture, and the terminology used by Arab nationalists concerning ""nahda," “revival,” and “rebirth.” We will explore various "golden ages" Arab nationalists envisioned, like pre-Islamic Semitic empires, the first Islamic state under the leadership of the Prophet Muhammad, the Ummayds, the Abbasids and Muslim Spain, as a way of analyzing the the constructed and temporal nature of national discourses. We will finally examine the distinction between Pan-Arab nationalism (qawmiyya), which considered Arab culture, history, and language as markers of one’s national identity, and often strove for political unity with other Arab states; and territorial-patriotic nationalism (wataniyya), which hailed the national cultures of particular Arab states (Egyptian, Iraqi, Lebanese), focusing on their geography, archaeology, and history the key features of national identity.

Instructor(s): O. Bashkin     Terms Offered: Autumn

NEHC 30943. Colloquium: Iran and Central Asia. 100 Units.

A colloquium on the sources for and the literature on the political, social, economic, technological, and cultural history of Western and Central Asia from 900 to 1750. Specific topics will vary and focus on the Turks and the Islamic world, the Mongol universal empire, the age of Timur and the Turkmens, and the development of the "Gunpowder Empires."

Instructor(s): J. Woods     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Open to upper-level undergraduates with consent of instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): CMES 58601,HIST 58601

NEHC 30944. Colloquium: Iran and Central Asia 2. 100 Units.

The second quarter will be devoted to the preparation of a major research paper.

Instructor(s): J. Woods     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): HIST 58601; open to upper-level undergraduates with consent
Equivalent Course(s): CMES 58602,HIST 58602

NEHC 34800. Jews and Arabs: Three Moralities, Historiographies & Roadmaps. 100 Units.

A distinction will be made between mainly three approaches to Zionism: essentialist-proprietary, constructivist-egalitarian, and critical-dismissive. This will be followed by an explication of these approaches’ implications for four issues: pre-Zionist Jewish history; institutional and territorial arrangements in Israel/Palestine concerning the relationships between Jews and the Palestinians; the relationships between Israeli Jews and world Jewry; and the implications of these approaches for the future of Israel/Palestine and the future of Judaism.

Instructor(s): C. Gans     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This course may be used to fulfill the general education requirement in civilization studies.
Equivalent Course(s): PLSC 38510,JWSC 20233,NEHC 24800,PLSC 28510

NEHC 34801. Nationalism and Multiculturalism. 100 Units.

The main goal of the course is to conduct a critical discussion of the different types of multicultural and national rights, their possible justifications, and the way they should apply in Israel, compared to some other cases. In order to facilitate this, two general topics will be discussed: the concepts of the nation and of cultural groups; a normative typology of nationalist ideologies and types of multicultural programs. These then will be applied to more particular issues such as national self-determination, cultural preservation rights, nationalism and immigration, with special attention to the Israeli case (e.g. Israel’s Law of Return, refusal to allow the return of Palestinian refugees, etc.).

Instructor(s): C. Gans     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): PLSC 41510

NEHC 35147. Anthropology of Israel. 100 Units.

This seminar explores the dynamics of Israeli culture and society through a combination of weekly screenings of Israeli fiction and documentary films with readings from ethnographic and other relevant research. Among the (often overlapping) topics to be covered in this examination of the institutional and ideological construction of Israeli identity/ies: the absorption of immigrants; ethnic, class, and religious tensions; the kibbutz; military experience; the Holocaust; evolving attitudes about gender and sexuality; the struggle for minorities’ rights; and Arab-Jewish relations. 

Instructor(s): Morris Fred     Terms Offered: Spring,TBD
Prerequisite(s): Undergrads must be upper division (3rd and 4th years)
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 35150,CMES 35150,NEHC 25147,ANTH 25150,JWSC 25149,MAPS 35150

NEHC 35149. Architecture and the Zionist Imagination. 100 Units.

This course explores the intersection of form and ideology through the example of the built environments (both speculative and realized) that were part of the formation of the Jewish state and its history. We will follow the evolution of Israeli architecture, starting with the interwar period, in which Zionist institutions were built in Palestine under British colonial rule. In this context, debates centered on the question of how different modernist styles developed in Europe and imported to the Middle East can respond to different streams within Zionism. We then move on to the period of nation-building, in which attempts were made to develop an Israeli architectural style that would respond to the waves of immigration and the formation of state institutions. Now, a debate emerged between the modernist style that came to represent an emergent tradition, and a new generation of architects who sought to develop a more local idiom. The current phase of Israeli architecture is influenced by the political turn to the right, the institution of liberal economic policies, the arrival of a large wave of post-Soviet Russian immigrants, and an opening to global commerce, all of which have weakened the nation state. In addition to studying this architectural history, we will engage with cultural texts (literary, filmic, artistic) that imagine and describe Zionist spaces and places, starting with Theodor Herzl’s Zionist Utopia, Altneuland, and all the way through contemporary TV sitco

Instructor(s): A. Nitzan-Shiftan and N. Rokem     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 36510,NEHC 25149,ARTH 26510

NEHC 36151. The History of Iraq in the 20th Century. 100 Units.

The class explores the history of Iraq during the years 1917-2015. We will discuss the rise of the Iraqi nation state, Iraqi and Pan-Arab nationalism, and Iraqi authoritarianism. The class will focus on the unique histories of particular group in Iraqi society; religious groups (Shiis, Sunnis, Jews), ethnic groups (especially Kurds), classes (the urban poor, the educated middle classes, the landed and tribal elites), Iraqi women, and Iraqi tribesmen. Other classes will explore the ideologies that became prominent in the Iraqi public sphere, from communism to Islamic radicalism. We will likewise discuss how colonialism and imperialism shaped major trends in Iraqi history. The reading materials for the class are based on a combination of primary and secondary sources: we will read together Iraqi novels, memoirs and poems (in translation), as well as British and American diplomatic documents about  to Iraq.

Instructor(s): Orit Bashkin     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): SIGN 26028

NEHC 40020. The Mediterranean Sea in Antiquity: Imperial Connections. 100 Units.

The Mediterranean Sea has long inspired imaginings of lands and peoples connected by its waters. From the Romans’ Mare Nostrum, “our sea,” to today’s variants of “middle sea” – Greek Mesogeios, German Mittelmeer, and of course, Latin Mediterranean – imaginations of the sea have often celebrated its spatial and social cohesion. The Mediterranean continues to possess a middling geopolitical identity today, situated as it is between continental Europe, the Aegean, the Middle East, and North Africa. And yet, despite our diachronic investment in recognizing the Mediterranean’s grand narrative as a locus of cultural connectivity, its long-term histories of interregional dynamics remain difficult to approach holistically. This concern is especially salient when it comes to the study of ancient empires, those large, expansionary polities whose social, political, and economic practices drew disparate groups together, and at times forced them apart. 

Instructor(s): James Osborne     Terms Offered: Autumn

NEHC 40601. Readings in the Text of the Qur'an. 100 Units.

Intensive readings in the Arabic text of the Qur'an. We focus on reading the Qur'anic text closely, with attention to grammar, syntax, recitation protocols, vocabulary, parables, symbols, figures of speech, rhetoric, changes in voice and person, allusions to parallel Qur'anic passages, and theology. Classical and modern commentaries are consulted, but the primary emphasis is on the Qur'anic text itself. The winter 2013 course will focus upon suras attributed to the Meccan period of Muhammad's prophetic career, particularly those such as suras 52, 53, 55, and 56 that take up the theme of the garden. Students may well have different levels of Arabic; the course does not make Arabic proficiency into a matter of evaluation, but encourages each participant to work at his or her level.

Instructor(s): Michael Sells     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): The second quarter of “Introduction to Qur’anic Arabic”, or 2 years of Arabic or the equivalent.
Equivalent Course(s): ISLM 40500

NEHC 40604. Readings in Arabic Religious Texts. 100 Units.

Selected texts from the Qur’an, the Arabic Bible, Islamic philosophy, Sufism, and other classical Arabic literature.

Instructor(s): Michael Sells     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): HIJD 50200,ISLM 50200

NEHC 40680. Readings in Islamic Thought I: 800–1200. 100 Units.

This course focuses on close reading of selected primary texts in Arabic from a wide variety of fields, including history, theology, language, philosophy, and law. The aim of the course is both to familiarize students with the content and style of these works and to provide tools for and practice in analyzing the works within their particular intellectual contexts. (Readings in Islamic Thought I and II can be taken separately.)

Instructor(s): A. El Shamsy     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): 3 years of Arabic
Equivalent Course(s): ISLM 40680

NEHC 40681. Readings in Islamic Thought II: 1200-1600. 100 Units.

This course focuses on close reading of selected primary texts in Arabic from a wide variety of fields, including history, theology, language, philosophy, and law. The aim of the course is both to familiarize students with the content and style of these works and to provide tools for and practice in analyzing the works within their particular intellectual contexts. (Readings in Islamic Thought I and II can be taken separately.)

Instructor(s): A. El Shamsy     Terms Offered: Spring

NEHC 40925. Readings in Islamic Law. 100 Units.

This course provides a comprehensive survey of the primary literatures of Islamic law and their treatment in modern scholarship. Primary texts read and discussed in class cover the following genres: compendium (mukhtasar), commentary (sharh), legal disputation (jadal), legal theory (usul al-fiqh), legal maxims (qawa’id fiqhiyya), handbooks for judges (adab al-qadi), handbooks for muftis (adab al-mufti), and legal responsa (fatawa). We will read closely selected excerpts from each of these genres and discuss relevant secondary literature in order to contextualize the primary texts thematically and historically and to examine critically the research questions that have thus far animated the modern study of Islamic law.

Instructor(s): Ahmed El Shamsy     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): 2 years of Arabic

NEHC 45516. State and Society under the Ptolemies. 100 Units.

Recent research encourages a reexamination of the classical opposition between pre-modern and modern states. As traditionally defined, the key difference would be the inability of a pre-modern state to exercise in-depth control of society. Being unable to develop a significant bureaucratic apparatus, a pre-modern state could have only achieved a weak control of the people it administered. To a certain extent, the opposition still has some validity, but the alleged “weakness” of pre-modern states, for instance in terms of capacity for extraction of revenue, should be revisited. Thanks to the sources available, the Ptolemaic possessions (by which one will understand not only Egypt but all the other territories under Ptolemaic control, from Asia Minor to Syria and from Cyrene to Cyprus) provide an ideal case study to test these concepts. We will examine written documents in their original languages, but translations will also be provided, which will allow students who do not control the ancient languages to also participate in the seminar. 

Instructor(s): A. Bresson, B. Muhs     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ANCM 45516

NEHC 49900. Reading and Research. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn, Winter, Spring
Note(s): Select section from faculty list

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Near Eastern Languages Courses

NELG 30325. Introduction to Old South Arabian. 100 Units.

This course is an introduction to the languages of the inscriptional material found in western South Arabia, todays Yemen. The inscriptions date from roughly the 8th century BCE to the 6th century CE and are written in four closely related languages, Sabaic, Minaic, Qatabanic, and Hadramitic. In this class we will read material from all major periods and languages of attestation.

Instructor(s): R. Hasselbach-Andee     Terms Offered: Autumn

NELG 49900. Reading and Research. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn, Winter, Spring
Note(s): Select section from faculty list

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Persian Courses

PERS 30332. Persian Sufi Texts. 100 Units.

Survey of Sufism of Persianate expression.  We will read and discuss primary texts and secondary literature about devotional practices, genres of mystical and sufi literature, hagiography and Sufi saints, theory of love, as well as Theosophy.
,Authors and texts covered will include selections from the following:
,Hujwiri, Kashf al-mahjub (Revealing What's Veiled)
,`Abd Allah Ansari, Munajat nama, Sad Maydan (Intimate Prayers/ Hundred Grounds)
,Muhammad al-Ghazali, Kimia-ye Sa`adat (Alchemy of Happiness)
,Ahmad al-Ghazali, Savanih (Spiritual Happenings)
,Abu Sa`id-i Abi al-Khayr, Halat va sokhanan (States and Sayings)
,Muhammad-i Munavvar, Asrar al-tawhid (Secrets of God's Mystical Oneness)
,Ahval va aqval-i Shaykh Abu al-Hasan-i Kharraqani (States and Sayings)
,Farid al-Din Attar, Tazkirat al-awliya (Memorials of the Faithful)
,Yayha Suhravardi, Partaw-nama (Book of Radiance)
,Baha al-Din Valad, Ma`arif (Discourses)
,Shams al-Din Tabriz, Maqalat (Discourses)
,Jalal al-Din Rumi, Fih ma fih (Discourses)
,Jami, Nafahat al-uns
,Kamal al-Din Gazurgahi, Majalis al-`ushshaq
,Ahmad Sirhindi, Maktubat
,Dara Shikoh, Majma` al-Bahrayn

Instructor(s): Franklin Lewis     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): 2 years of Persian or the equivalent

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Sumerian Courses

SUMR 30608. Advanced Sumerian Literary Texts. 100 Units.

Advanced seminar in Sumerian literary texts

Instructor(s): Chris Woods     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Introductory Sumerian sequence

SUMR 49900. Reading and Research. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): STAFF     Terms Offered: Autumn, Winter, Spring
Note(s): Select section from faculty list

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Turkish Courses

TURK 30101-30102-30103. Advanced Turkish I-II-III.

The objectives of the course are to develop advanced language skills in Modern Turkish through reading, writing, listening, and speaking, with special emphasis on the proper usage of vocabulary and idiomatic expressions, and to continue the study of Turkish literature and texts begun in the second year. This course is conducted entirely in Turkish. The course is designed to bring the advanced student to a professional level of proficiency. Students are expected to produce advanced level writing in Turkish.

TURK 30101. Advanced Turkish I. 100 Units.

Third Quarter of Advanced Modern Turkish Language.

Instructor(s): K. Arik     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): TURK 20103 or Consent

TURK 30102. Advanced Turkish II. 100 Units.


Instructor(s): K. Arik     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): TURK 30101

TURK 30103. Advanced Turkish III. 100 Units.


Instructor(s): K. Arik      Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): TURK 30102

TURK 40589. Advanced Ottoman Historical Texts. 100 Units.

Based on selected readings from major Ottoman chronicles from the fifteenth to the seventeenth centuries, the course provides an introduction to the use of primary narrative materials and an overview of the development and range of Ottoman historical writing. Knowledge of modern and Ottoman Turkish required.

Instructor(s): C. Fleischer     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Consent required
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 58301

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Ugaritic Courses

There are currently no courses offered in this subject.

Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations - Uzbek Courses