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Matters of Debate: Mapping Research on the Middle East - New School Student Conference

Friday, April 22, 2016 at 9:00 am to 1:00 pm

80 Fifth Avenue, Room 529 80 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10003

The New School hosts a one-day conference on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), organized by New School graduate students Michelle Weitzel and FaDi Shayya, and sponsored by New School faculty Benoit Challand, Evren Uzer, and Aaron Jakes.

Overview

Materiality, whether archeological, architectural, sensory, social, economic, or aesthetic, constitutes an integral dimension of political and cultural life, representing at once the present moment and a portal to an earlier time.  In places that have undergone rapid transformation and disruption, the residue of quotidian things must often be made to stand in for alternate forms of evidence or discourse.  The opportunities opened by rethinking the boundaries between subject and object, body and space, presentation and politics through a prism of materiality advance our belief that sustained critical scholarship is necessary in order to make sense of the rapidly changing political landscape of the greater Middle East. This inaugural interdisciplinary conference aims to encourage dialogue and debate on a wide range of topics affecting the region, interrogating the ways in which the "material Middle East" resonates across disciplines and diverse methodological approaches, as well examining the limits of this mode of "knowing" a region.

Program

This day-long gathering is comprised of morning sessions open to the general public between 9am-1pm, and then will be followed by a closed afternoon workshop.

The conference aims to accomplish two related goals. The morning sessions offer an opportunity to introduce the newly-formed Middle East and North Africa network at the New School, both individually and collectively. A series of short research presentations by the members of the network will provide the basis for open discussion of common themes, research areas, and problematics.

The closed afternoon session will employ the corpus of keywords and themes that that emerge from the morning presentations as material for an instructional workshop with members of Graph Commons in order to map the MENA network. This visualization exercise will in turn provide the basis for discussion of future programming and research collaboration in the coming years.

Contact

For more information, contact Michelle Weitzel at weitm736@newschool.edu.

 

Sponsored by the New School for Social Research.

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Event Type

Conferences and Symposia

Audience

General Public

Theme

Humanity, Society, Social Justice, International and Global

School

The New School for Social Research, Program in Historical Studies

Topic

History, Politics, Data, Mapping, and Information Design

Cost

Free; Open to the public.

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Getting Here

Detailed Directions

By Train:
The 4, 5, 6, N, R, Q and L to 14th St./Union Square.
The A, C and E to 14th St. and 8th Ave.
The 1, 2 and 3 to 14th St. and 7th Ave.
The F and M to 14th St. and 6th Ave.
PATH train to 14th St. and 6th Ave.

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