Arab World, Islam and the Middle East

Arab World, Islam and The Middle East

ARIS1671 Arabs, Islam & Middle East: Introduction

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Lucia Sorbera Session: Semester 1 Classes: 1x2-hr lecture/week, 1x1-hr tutorial/week Assessment: 1x2000wd essay (40%), 1x class presentation (20%), 1x2hr final exam (40%)
This unit provides an introduction to the study of the Arab world, Islam and the Middle East. It focuses on Arab and Islamic society and culture in the Middle East. Main themes include: Geographical setting and historical orientations; environment and society, the Arabs and the world of late antiquity; the importance of Arab trade and seafaring; the rise of Islam: the Prophet Muhammad and the Qur'an, Pillars of Islam and Community, the early Arab Islamic Caliphate; religion and politics in the Islamic tradition, Islamic law and society, women and gender issues in Islam, aspects of Middle Eastern socio-economic and cultural life in the age of the Caliphate as a background to the early modern Middle East up to Ottoman times. On completion of this unit, students proceed to ARIS1672 in Semester 2.
ARIS1672 Arab-Islamic Civilisation: Introduction

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Lucia Sorbera Session: Semester 2 Classes: 1x2-hr lecture/week, 1x1-hr tutorial/week Prerequisites: ARIS1001 or ARIS1671 Assessment: 1x2000wd essay (40%), 1xclass presentation (20%), 1x2hr final exam (40%)
This unit focuses on Arab and Islamic Learning, Spirituality and Art. Themes include: The scope of classical Arabic learning: Qur'anic studies and Prophetic traditions, the Hellenistic legacy in Arabic learning, Islamic philosophy and sciences, geographical writings and historiography, issues in Islamic theology, role of scholars, the concept of knowledge; contribution of Arabic-speaking Christian scholars to classical Arab intellectual life; Islamic asceticism, mysticism and the Sufi orders; Arab and Islamic aesthetics: religious and secular art, architectural design and decoration, the role of calligraphy, geometry and arabesque.
ARIS2674 Islam and Politics: Modernity Challenges

Credit points: 6 Session: Semester 2 Classes: 1x2-hr lecture/week, 1x1-hr tutorial/week Prerequisites: (ARIS1001 or ARIS1671) or (12 Junior credit points from History or Ancient History) or (RLST1002 and RLST1005) Prohibitions: ARIS2004, JCTC3601 Assessment: 1x2250wd essay (40%), 1x2250wd take-home exercise (40%), class presentation (20%)
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
Note: This unit is available as a designated 'Advanced' unit for students who are already enrolled in the BA (Advanced) degree program.
This unit focuses on Islam as a political and cultural force in the modern world, particularly in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia. Issues include: Islamic political thought; the Sunna-Shi'a divergence and the significance of Shi'a Islam; Islamic traditionalism; reform; radicalism; Jihad and 'fundamentalism'; Islamic political movements in Arab countries; Turkey, Iran and Asia; Islam and legitimacy of political regimes; Muslim minorities in the world; current debates on the 'Islamic threat'; 'terrorism'; 'clash of civilisations' and Islamic-Western mutual perceptions.
ARIS2675 Gendering History in the Arab World

Credit points: 6 Session: Semester 1 Classes: 1x2-hr lecture/week, 1x1-hr tutorial/week Prerequisites: (12 Junior credit points from one of (Arabic and Islamic Studies, European Studies, European, Classical or Middle Eastern Languages or Studies, English, Government and International Relations, History, Sociology, Media and Communications or Gender and Cultural Studies)) or (12 Junior credit points History or 12 Junior credit points from Ancient History) or (RLST1002 and RLST1005) Assessment: 1x2500wd essay (50%), 1x500wd mid semester test (20%), 1x1000wd research project plan (10%), 1x500wd tutorial presentation (20%)
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
This unit situates contemporary debates about gender in the context of the history of the Middle East and North Africa. The unit focuses on a selection of literary and audiovisual productions from Egypt, Iraq, Palestine, Lebanon and the Maghreb countries. Representations of masculinity (and male and female homosexuality) will form an integral part of the analysis. The interactions of gender, culture and history are analysed through feminist, literary, cultural and historiographical criticism.
ARIS3675 Society and Politics in the Middle East

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Lucia Sorbera Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2x1-hr seminars/week Prerequisites: ARIS1001 or ARIS1671 Prohibitions: ARIS2005 Assessment: 1x2400wd essay (40%), 1xpresentation (equivalent to 1200wds) (20%), final exam or assignments (equivalent to 2400wds) (40%)
Note: This unit is available as a designated 'Advanced' unit to students enrolled in the BA (Advanced) degree program.
This unit focuses on the dynamics of society and politics in the modern Middle East, including the Arab world, Iran and Turkey. It investigates issues of diversity, commonality, continuity and change, Ottoman legacy and European colonial impact, traditional and modern elites, the role of oil, regional conflicts, Arab regional system and responses to globalisation, US policies and Western interests, dynamics of state, society and religion, women's rights, civil society and democratisation in the Middle East.
ARIS3676 Issues and Debates in Arab Culture Today

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Lucia Sorbera Session: Semester 2 Classes: 2x1-hr seminars/week Prerequisites: ARIS1001 or ARIS1671 Prohibitions: ARIS2006 Assessment: 1x2400wd essay (40%), 1x presentation (equivalent to 1200wds) (20%), final exam or assignments (equivalent to 2400wds) (40%)
Note: This unit is available as a designated 'Advanced' unit to students enrolled in the BA (Advanced) degree program.
This unit investigates how issues are debated in the contemporary Arab world, focusing on questions of pan-Arabism, the nation-state, regionalism and traditional loyalties, the Arabic language and cultural identity, history and attitudes to the past, 'authenticity', modernity, westernisation, attitudes to the West and the rest of the world, debates on secularism, 'neo-patriarchy', peace, progress, freedom, absenting and assertion of women's role, human rights, democracy, highlighting the role of intellectuals, the media and dynamics of public space in Arab countries.
ARIS4011 Arabic and Islamic Studies Honours A

Credit points: 12 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Lucia Sorbera Session: Semester 1,Semester 2 Classes: Two seminars, each seminar meets weekly for 2 hours for one semester Prerequisites: Credit average in 48 senior credit points of Arabic and Islamic Studies Assessment: A thesis of 18000-20000 words and 2500 words of written work or its equivalent for each seminar.
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
The Honours program in Arabic and Islamic Studies consists of:
1.a thesis written under the supervision of one or more members of academic staff
2. two seminars that meet for two hours a week for one semester.
The thesis should be of 18000-20000 words in length. Each seminar requires 2500 words of written work or its equivalent.
The thesis is worth 50% of the final Honours mark and each of the seminars is worth 25%.
The following seminars are on offer in 2014:
Methodology of Research in Arabic and Islamic Studies (Dr Nijmeh Hajjar)
Practical Advanced Language for Research Purposes (Dr Nijmeh Hajjar)
For more information contact, Dr Lucia Sorbrera, Honours coordinator.
ARIS4012 Arabic and Islamic Studies Honours B

Credit points: 12 Session: Semester 1,Semester 2 Corequisites: ARIS4011
Refer to ARIS4011
ARIS4013 Arabic and Islamic Studies Honours C

Credit points: 12 Session: Semester 1,Semester 2 Corequisites: ARIS4012
Refer to ARIS4011
ARIS4014 Arabic and Islamic Studies Honours D

Credit points: 12 Session: Semester 1,Semester 2 Corequisites: ARIS4013
Refer to ARIS4011