Medhini Kumar near Lake Tiberias

Q&A With Medhini Kumar

February 4, 2021

Medhini Kumar is a 2016 graduate of the CMES AM Program in Middle Eastern Studies. She currently works as Communications Manager for UNRWA USA, an American nonprofit that is committed to bettering the lives of Palestine refugees through advocacy efforts in the United States and fundraising for United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) programs in the Middle East.... Read more about Q&A With Medhini Kumar

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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Tell This in My Memory, Eve Troutt Powell

Readings on Race and Slavery with Specific Relevance for Middle East Studies

July 7, 2020

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 books on race and slavery that have special relevance for Middle East studies. For information on locating books at a library near you, visit

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Rising Tides of Terrorism

July 6, 2020

"COVID-19 has shown that atypical, transnational security issues need to be taken seriously. Man-made threats are not the only forces that can devastate the globe and fundamentally disrupt daily life," writes second-year Center for Middle Eastern Studies AM student Margaret Dene, in an article for the Foreign Policy Research Institute, where she is a summer Research Associate. Read the complete article on the Foreign Policy...

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Carraleve Kosovo mosque damage

Harvard Librarian Puts This War Crime on the Map

February 21, 2020

In 1992, when he read about the burning of the National Library of Bosnia-Herzegovina, András Riedlmayer, bibliographer in Islamic Art and Architecture at the Harvard Fine Arts Library, knew it was an attack on more than physical objects. It was what he later testified to being “cultural heritage destruction”: intentional and unnecessary destruction of sites and records that act as a community’s collective memory. Read about his years of research into this cultural destruction and his expert testimony against Serbian nationalist Slobodan Milosevic during the International Criminal...

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