CMES News

Sihem Lamine with Yo-Yo Ma

Q&A with CMES Tunisia’s Sihem Lamine

May 9, 2022

Sihem Lamine is the Administrative and Program Manager of the Tunisia Office of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. Prior to officially joining CMES, Sihem worked as a consultant for CMES and Harvard Global Research and Support Services and played a major role in the transformation of the office space in Tunis from an empty shell to a functional and beautiful multi-purpose facility. For over six years she has been welcoming students, faculty, and visitors to the office, the city of Tunis, and the country of Tunisia, facilitating research projects, organizing public events, and generally helping visitors navigate and enjoy the resources and opportunities that Tunisia has to offer.... Read more about Q&A with CMES Tunisia’s Sihem Lamine

Samir Mansour Bookshop in Gaza, before and after Israeli attack, May 18, 2021

Readings and Digital Resources on Palestine

May 21, 2021

Rosie Bsheer, Assistant Professor of History, and Cemal Kafadar, Vehbi Koç Professor of Turkish Studies, both core faculty members of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, recommend the following English-language materials and resources to contextualize current events in Palestine. These resources offer analyses and histories of expulsion, occupation, settler colonialism, forced evictions, home demolitions, and annexation that situate the current struggle as...

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Sidi Bou Said Tunisia

Center for Middle Eastern Studies Extends Commitment to Its Tunisia Office for Six Years

January 20, 2021

Harvard’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES) announced today that it will continue to provide a wide range of research opportunities and programming through its Tunisia Office for a further six years, supported by a $2 million gift from Harvard alumnus Hazem Ben-Gacem ’92. The office, which opened its doors in Tunis in January 2017 with the support of an initial gift from Ben-Gacem, provides students and scholars with a...

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Big Apple Film Festival laurels

"#After Lockdown" Selected to Screen as Part of Big Apple Film Festival

October 26, 2020

#After Lockdown: Very Short Stories about Enduring a Global Pandemic, a short film designed by NYC-based animation studio Mr Sebs and co-produced by Harvard University's Center for Middle Eastern Studies and Center for Hellenic Studies, has been selected to screen as part of the Big Apple Film Festival 2020 Fall Edition.... Read more about "#After Lockdown" Selected to Screen as Part of Big Apple Film Festival

William Granara, Tunis

Fall 2020 Welcome from CMES Director William Granara

September 25, 2020

Dear Members of Harvard’s CMES Family:

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to a new academic year! Although we continue to practice safe distancing, we are off to a warm, smooth, and enthusiastic semester start. For me, it is most enjoyable to be back at the Center’s helm, having spent the past year on sabbatical leave, part of which was spent in Tunisia and the rest of the time here in Cambridge. Apart from the tragedy and disruption of the pandemic which all of us continue to experience equally, my year was a time of scholarly production and personal reflection....

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Cemal Kafadar

Year in Review: A Message from 2019-20 CMES Acting Director Cemal Kafadar

September 1, 2020

The original script made it look easy. I was going to be Acting Director for a year, while Bill Granara would enjoy his hard-earned sabbatical leave. The first eight months were indeed smooth, thanks above all to our administrative staff, working with great professionalism and efficiency under (to me) Lady Lauren Montague. Speaking of our staff colleagues, the Fall opened with the felicitous news that Carol Ann Young had given birth to Olive, whose visits to the center were the most cheerful moments of the semester—no contest.... Read more about Year in Review: A Message from 2019-20 CMES Acting Director Cemal Kafadar

CMES building north elevation

A Letter to the CMES and Harvard Community

July 10, 2020

It should not have taken a string of tragic and highly visible incidents of police brutality in the middle of a suffocating pandemic to sharpen the need to recognize and reckon with anti-Black racism and the legacy of slavery, but it did. Watching or reading about the horrifying final moments of the murder of George Floyd, some of us were immediately reminded of Radio Raheem—how is that for a name with "Middle Eastern" resonances?—and his tragic end, "fictionalized" more than thirty years ago in Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing (1989).*

At least, on this occasion, Floyd...

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