Critical Studies in Modern Middle Eastern Culture and Society

Core Major Course Requirements

MENAS Ph.D. students are required to take:

  • MENA 595D: Middle East- Approaches, Themes and Controversies
  • One Course in Middle Eastern History
  • One Course in Islamic Studies
  • One Course in Gender and Society in the Middle East
  • Total Core Units (not including languages)= 12 credits

The Critical Studies track is designed for the study of social and cultural practices and institutions in the modern Middle East . This track accommodates a wide range of fields of inquiry through its focus on the nature of the public sphere in which social and cultural issues of modern life take form. The course of study therefore provides a strong grounding in the cultural and historical factors that have played a key role in modern life in Middle Eastern societies, as well as in the interpretive strategies appropriate to them. The aim of the Critical Studies track is to give students the cultural background and analytical capability to situate issues of modern life in meaningful contexts.  Students in this track are required to use the courses of their minor concentration, and further courses where possible, to develop a full competence in an academic discipline appropriate to their chosen field of inquiry.

Contact Professor Leila Hudson ( for more information.