AGS Middle East Society

Monday, 17 October 2016

The AGS Middle East Society is a platform for information and discussion about Middle Eastern politics, culture, and current issues. Activities include regular guest talks by specialists on the topic along with screenings or debates, often held around a buffet of oriental cuisine. These events are open to students, faculty, and the wider public.

The AGS Middle East Society is based on an initiative by AGS students under the impulse of Professors Mariam Habibi and Joav Toker, who are both specialists of Middle Eastern history and politics. According to Professor Habibi, "one of the objectives of the AGS Middle East Society is to foster a more diverse – and through that, more accurate – understanding of the Middle East in an international relations perspective. This understanding should balance insiders' and outsiders' points of view, for the reality of the Middle East is both internal and external."

Since it was inaugurated in Fall 2015, speakers have included Kendal Nezan, President of the Kurdish Institute of Paris, who presented on the Kurds' history, culture, current issues and political prospects; International Affairs journalist Diane Jean about the Turkish elections; a trio of human rights activists who discussed the Human Rights situation of the Middle East through the case study of Bahrain, one of the countries that participated in the Arab Spring; and British-Iranian TV journalist Sanam Shantyaei of France 24, about the situation of Iran in the Middle East and in the international political landscape, with a particular focus on the upcoming Iranian elections and the relief of sanctions by the international community.

As an AGS student, you are encouraged to join the society to contribute ideas of discussion themes, participate in the search for interesting speakers... or share your cooking skills!

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