This is an introduction into the study of Islam and the rise of nationalism throughout the Middle East. The course will begin with an examination of the Ancient Middle East, followed by
the geographic and political scope of the region during and after Muhammad's time. There will be an emphasis on the 19th and 20th centuries depicting the origins and spread of the Islamic Empires [background on 15th-19th century Ottoman and Safavid dynasties] and their relationships with the West. Furthermore, the course will incorporate the feminist discourse on Islamic practice and ideology in the modern Middle East, while examining the economic and political development of the contemporary Middle East and the conflicts that have arisen over the past half century or more.