2017 Hisham Sharabi Memorial Lecture: “Mahjar Writers on the Subject of Palestine”

with Dr. Edmund Ghareeb
Author, Professor, and Senior Scholar, Palestine Center

*A light lunch is served at 12:30 p.m. Talk begins promptly at 1:00 p.m.

In honor of the legacy of Dr. Hisham Sharabi, Dr. Edmund Ghareeb will discuss the contributions of early Arab-American “men of letters” of the Mahjar press, whose writings shed light on the perceptions and positions held within these communities on the issues of Palestine and Arab nationalism. One of the leading Arab and Arab American literary critics, novelists, poets, and short story writers, Mikhail Naimy was a prominent contributor to the Mahjar press, the general name for the early Arabic-language newspapers and publications in the United States which peaked from the 1890s to the 1920s.  In 1915, two years before the Balfour Declaration, Naimy warned about the dangers of establishing a Jewish state in Palestine. Years later in the 1930s Ameen Rihani, another prominent writer, had a softer approach to Zionism as long as it was not “state-Zionism”. Dr. Ghareeb will discuss these Mahjari writers among others to explore the evolution of thought with regard to one of the central issues at the heart of 20th century Arab nationalism.

 

Dr. Edmund Ghareeb has served for over fifteen years as a member of The Palestine Center Committee at The Jerusalem Fund, advising on programs and conferences. An internationally recognized expert on the Middle East, Kurds, Iraq, and media issues, Ghareeb was the first Mustafa Barzani Scholar of Global Kurdish Studies at American University’s Center for Global Peace. He taught at AU for 28 years as well as at Georgetown University in Washington, DC and in Qatar, the University of Virginia, and the George Washington University. He is the author of The Kurdish Nationalist Movement and The Kurdish Question in Iraq, and the co-author of War in the Gulf and The Historical Dictionary of Iraq. Ghareeb is also the editor of Split Vision: The Portrayal of Arabs in the American Media, the first book to explore how the American media covers Arabs and Arab affairs. He was translator and editor, with Naseer Aruri, of Enemy of the Sun, an anthology of modern Palestinian poetry. Ghareeb has written and lectured extensively on U.S. policy toward the Middle East, Iraq, the Kurds, and Gulf politics, U.S.-Arab relations, Arab-Americans, the American media’s coverage of the Middle East, and the information revolution in the Arab world. He worked as a journalist for a number of years and has been interviewed widely by major American, Arab, European, and Asian media outlets.

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