Fall 2016

Welcome to a new semester at CMES! Please find below the fall 2016 program. Please note that the program is still preliminary and subject to change.

To make sure to never miss out of any of our events (or changes to the program) you can subscribe to our program in any calendar supporting the iCal format. Simply do so by copying the following adress and paste it into your calendar using the option subscribe to calendar:

Date Title Location Time
Aug. 31 Turkey's Whatsapp Coup: Implications for Europe and the Middle East

Welcome to a roundtable discussion of the 15 July coup in Turkey and its aftermath, with a particular focus on its implications for Europe and the broader Middle East, in particular the ongoing war in Syria. The discussants include Johanna Alkan Olsson (Lund University), Paul T. Levin (Director, Stockholm Institute for Turkish Studies, SUITS), Cengiz Candar (Distinguished Visiting Scholar, SUITS), and Umut Ozkirimli (Center for Middle Eastern Studies, CMES). The event will be moderated by Leif Stenberg, Director of CMES.
Edens hörsal 19:00
Sept. 14 How immigration can affect the mainstream: The U.S. case

Richard Alba, Distinguished Professor, City University of New York.

Abstract: I will discuss the mechanisms and evidence of mainstream expansion as a result of immigration in the U.S. Two windows will be used to glimpse empirically the processes involved: 1) the changing ethno-racial composition of the upper tiers of the workforce; 2) the rising frequency of mixed unions and the characteristics of Americans who are growing up in families that mix minorities and majority backgrounds. I will argue that these processes of change amount to an assimilation that bears significant resemblance to assimilation in the past. Like that earlier assimilation, the contemporary one is engendering greater diversity within the mainstream, rather than homogenization.
'CMES seminar room' 16:00
Sept. 15 CMES - the film

In collaboration with explorer and film maker Mikael Strandberg (whose earlier work include Expedition Yemen – 126 degrees in the shade (2013), Expedition Frozen Frontier (2013), Mannen med barnvagnen (2016) ) CMES decided to document in a short movie format its core activities and mission. Join us for a tour behind the scenes at CMES!
Snacks and light refreshments will be served after the screening.
LUX B:152, Helgonavägen 3 18:00
Sept. 27 CMES on Tour: Jihadism i Europa

Jihadism och rekrytering till våldsbejakande extremism bredur ut sig i Europa och Sverige. Hur arbetar man ute i Europa för att stoppa rekryteringen till våldsbejakande islamistiska grupper? Finns det olika sätta att förebygga radikaliseringen? Medverkande: Markus Holdo, Centrum för Mellanösternstudier i Lund och Emin Poljarevic, Uppsala universitet. Moderator: Nathalie Besèr. I samarbete med Medelhavsmuseet och RE:Orient i Stockholm.
Medelhavsmuseet, Fredsgatan 2, Stockholm 18:00
Sept. 28 Muslim Mothers in ground combat against IS - women's identitties and social change in Iraqi Kurdistan.

Lecture with Marco Nilsson, Senior lecturer of political science at Jönköping University.

The lecture is based on an ongoing project analyzing the experiences and identities of Kurdish women fighting the IS in northern Iraq as part of the Peshmerga army. The case is especially interesting because these women have engaged in ground combat and because there is an empirical gap in knowledge especially concerning Muslim women’s experiences as soldiers. Wars bring great destruction but can also catalyze social change. While seeking balance between their identities as good mothers and professional soldiers, many Kurdish women see their war participation as a chance to increase their agency and improve equality in society, as combat operations create a window of opportunity to change perceptions of women’s roles.
CMES seminar room 15:00
Oct. 6 Shrine politics; piety and religious difference in Syria

Prof. Dr. Dick Douwes, Dean of Erasmus School of History, Communication and Culture (ESHCC), Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Present-day tensions and violence in the Middle East are often defined as being sectarian and, in fact, several parties that are involved in warfare in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere have a sectarian discourse and perform sectarianism through violent–at times severely cruel–symbolic action, the most obvious case being the Islamic State (IS) having staged an seemingly apocalyptic battle based upon a radical reading of the religious past and present, legitimizing the killing of ‘unbelievers’, the degradation of their women to slavery, the destruction of shrines, churches, monasteries, etc.. But sectarian reasoning and action are not the prerogative of IS and other Jihadist movements, as its adversaries, too, including various regimes in the region, invoke images from an imaginary past in their slogans and use–apart from lethal military violence– violence such as desecrating and destroying what is held sacred by the other, including the killing of religious leaders and the destruction of mosques. Within the pro-regime war cult the shrine of Sayyida Zaynab occupies a central position for Shiite millitants from Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere who have flocked to the Sayyida Zaynab neighbourhood, a southern suburb of Damascus, in an effort to re-enact Shiite historicy as an act of empowerment of the community.
CMES seminar room 15:00
Oct. 19 Recognizer’s Burden: AKP and the Democratic Opening towards Kurds in Turkey

Arda Gucler, Uppsala universitet

Since the early 2000s, Turkish politics has gone through a process of democratization. The two most prominent pillars of this phenomenon has been the integration of the Islamic constituencies into Turkish politics and the recent democratic opening towards the Kurdish constituency. Even though both of these events have been closely studied by the recent scholarship on Turkish politics, the question of how they are interlinked with one another remains unexplored. This is what this article intends to do. It argues that even though the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government’s decision to recognize the Kurdish identity has partially managed to destabilize the norms that are associated with ethnic nationalism in Turkish politics, it has not completely broken away from nationalism per se. Instead, the AKP’s willingness to recognize the Kurdish identity is accompanied with this government’s aspiration to consolidate a new form of nationalism, which is now known as Muslim Nationalism. To demonstrate this, the article taps into the contemporary discussions on the concept of recognition in political theory. The theory teaches us that recognition not only grants rights to ‘the recognized’, but also shores up the political power of ‘the recognizer’. This article locates the recent emergence of Muslim Nationalism as a manifestation of this latter aspect of politics of recognition.
CMES seminar room 16:00
Nov. 2 Syrian refugee crisis in the Middle East

Kamel Doraï, Institut français du Proche-Orient (Ifpo)

The Syrian conflict has caused the forced displacement of more than 5 million refugees mainly in neighbouring countries but also outside the Middle East. It is the most important refugee movement in the Middle East since World War II. This conference will analyse the consequences and the political response of this massive refugee movement in the neighbouring countries (mainly Jordan and Lebanon), looking more specifically the settlement patterns of Syrian refugees in these countries (camp vs. self settled refugees). A focus will be put on the specific situation of the Palestinian refugees from Syria who face particular obstacles while seeking asylum in the Middle Eastern countries.
CMES seminar room 16:00
Nov. 30 Halal Money - Islamic finance in Norway

Torkel Brekke, Institutt for kulturstudier og orientalske språk, Oslo

This lecture presents the first overview of the interest in Islamic financial products among Muslims in a Nordic country. There are no Islamic banks in the region today, but there are several initiatives to establish these services. The lecture is based on a survey of 707 Muslims in Norway carried out in 2015 and 2016, on individual interviews and focus groups, as well as on dialogue with commercial banks. It will discuss the interest in Islamic banking and say something about its sociological and religious significance.
TBA '15:00
Dec. 7 A Genealogy of War and the Future of Arabia

Isa Blumi, Associate Professor, Stockholm University Institute for Turkish Studies (SUITS)

Since March 2015, an international coalition of forces—including Britain and the US—have waged a military campaign in Yemen that has resulted in a humanitarian disaster involving millions. This lecture will suggest a need to provide an in-depth accounting for how this war, and the almost non-stop violence visiting the county since the end of Cold War, actually has transnational origins. As such, this lecture will offer unique insights into how globalization, development, the war on terror, and “disaster capitalism” more generally directly shapes the horizons of disparate political and economic actors intersecting in Arabia. This analysis should thus help scholars and students of international relations, development, globalization, imperialism and political economy gain an understanding of how resource and culturally rich countries like Yemen end up either being warzones or, at best, the target of exploitation aiming to turn Southern Arabia into nothing more than the Tijuana of the larger Middle East.

CMES seminar room 16:00

Fall program 2016