Teach-In on Islam, The Middle East, and America

February 10, 2017

In response to the recent Executive Order barring U.S. entry to citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries, Cornell’s Department of Near Eastern Studies will hold a teach-in Feb. 17 in the Groos Family Atrium in Klarman Hall from 10 a.m. to noon. The event is free and the public is welcome.

The event is co-sponsored by the Clarke Institute for Law and Development in the Middle East and North Africa, Comparative Muslim Societies, Jewish Studies, and Ottoman and Turkish Studies Initiative.


Welcome given by Lauren Monroe, Chair of the Department of Near Eastern Studies.

  • "Islam and History of Immigration to US"  Salah Hassan, Goldwin Smith Professor in History of Art and Africana Studies; Director of Institute of Comparative Modernities
  • "The Diversity of Islam"   Eric Tagliacozzo, Professor in the History Department; Director of Comparative Muslim Societies
  • "Syrian Refugees"   Elyse Semerdjian, Visiting Fellow in the Society for the Humanities 
  • "Muslim Identity and the National Security State"  Aziz Rana, Professor of Law
  • "Ask a Middle East Specialist"   Ziad Fahmy, Associate Professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies
  • "The Middle East and American Wars"  Kyle Anderson, Ph.D. Candidate in Modern Middle Eastern History in the Department of Near Eastern Studies
  • "Theater and Revolution: the View from Tahrir"   Rebekah Maggor, Assistant Professor in Performance and Media Arts
  • "Cornell Welcomes Refugees"  Salma Shitia, Undergraduate Major in the Department of Near Eastern Studies
  • "Banned Literary Voices"   Deborah Starr, Associate Professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies

Poetry Readers:

  • Ahmad Alswaid, Ph.D. Candidate in Comparative Literature “This is My Name” by Adonis
  • Makda Weatherspoon, Senior Lecturer, Arabic Program  “A Drop of Rain” by Abdel Wahab al Bayati
  • Danny Sharpe, Undergraduate, Near Eastern Studies Major
  • Rama Alhabian, Ph.D. Candidate in Near Eastern Studies “O, My Libya” by Laila Nehoum
  • Deborah Starr, Associate Professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies “Allegations” by Shawqi Shafiq

Suggested Readings/Videos

  • Abdul Hamid El Zein, "Beyond Ideology and Theology: The Search for the Anthropology of Islam"
  • Mahmood Mamdani's "Good Muslim, Bad Muslim"
  • Rabih Alameddine, "Our Part in the Darkness"
  • The Pluralism Project, Harvard University, "The First American Muslims"
  • Cornell Welcomes Refugees, a student organization, made a video in response to the Jan. 27 Executive Order: player.vimeo.com/video/203450909



protest signs in front of large copy of the Declaration of Independence