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New edition of Aula Árabe Universitaria

From September 28, 2020 until May 18, 20217:00 p.m.
IN MADRID AND ONLINE
Casa Árabe Auditorium (at Calle Alcalá, 62). 7:00 p.m. Free entry until the event’s capacity is reached.

This annual series of conferences, organized with the cooperation of university programs in the Autonomous Region of Madrid, is beginning at our headquarters in Madrid on September 28.

At this second edition, Aula Árabe Universitaria II (AAUII) has grown even larger. Throughout the academic year of 2020-2021, it will feature 17 conferences organized in collaboration with undergraduate and graduate (Master’s and PhD) university programs from five universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid: the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM), Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (URJC), Saint Louis University’s Madrid Campus and the Universidad Antonio de Nebrija. This year, two of the conferences are also being organized with the cooperation of IEMed, as a result of a shared experience with Aula Mediterrània. Some of the conferences will also be repeated in Cordoba, when an extension of the Aula Árabe program is held in that city. 

The conferences will deal with a variety of subjects related to the Arab and Islamic world, from ancient history up to the present day, including those topics and speakers selected by the associated university programs, in accordance with their curricular needs and interests.

The goal of Aula Árabe Universitaria is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the training given in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts at the international level in different fields related to the Arab world. Its mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a conference within the series, though they are open to students from the other associated programs, as well as to the general public.

Every student receives a ”Passport to the Arab World,” which gets stamped when they attend the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate.

All of the conferences are organized at Casa Árabe’s headquarters in Madrid at 7:00 p.m. (if the public health situation permits). Given the current health situation, the next conferences will be organized online. For specific information on the new broadcast format and schedule, please consult the details of each particular conference.

Further information about AAU2 (in Spanish) 
About the first edition of Aula Árabe (2019-20)
New edition of Aula Árabe Universitaria
  • Theater Written in Moroccan Arabic: Past and present

    Theater Written in Moroccan Arabic: Past and present

    October 28, 20205:00 p.m. Only for students of university programs associated or cooperating with the Aula Árabe Universitaria program
    ONLINE
    5:00 p.m. Only for students of university programs associated or cooperating with the Aula Árabe Universitaria program
    The conference will be shown on our Youtube channel as of Friday, October 30.
    In French, without translation.
    Second conference in the program “Aula Árabe Universitaria,” to be given by Omar Fertat, a researcher and professor of Theater at the University of Bordeaux-Montaigne.
    In the beginning, Moroccan theater, mainly through the encouragement of youths coming from nationalist and reformist movements, originally adopted classical or literary Arabic as its primary language. However, it did not take long for Darija, the Moroccan dialect of Arabic, to be adopted by Moroccan playwrights, and since the 1950s it has become the main language of the fourth art in Morocco.

    The conference, to be given by the University of Bordeaux-Montaigne’s theater researcher and professor, Omar Fertat, will provide an overview of the use of Darija in Moroccan theater by examining the most important moments in this process, while highlighting the most striking experiences of some playwrights: they have not only used the vernacular language as a means of communication, but also have given it permanent status as a full-fledged means of artistic and literary expression. In turn, Professor Fertat will delve into the contemporary experiences of young Moroccan playwrights, who have distinguished themselves on Arab and Moroccan stages by using Darija as the main language in their works.

    The meeting will be introduced and moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator, and Adil Moustaoui, a professor of Modern Languages and Literatures at UCM.

    Casa Árabe has organized this conference as part of the event series Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Modern Languages and Literatures (with the option of Arabic as the major language) at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). The students in this program and the other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to join the event live by video conference. All other audiences will be able to access it as of October 30 on Casa Árabe’s Youtube channel.

    Omar Fertat
    Omar Fertat is a researcher and professor of Theater at the University of Bordeaux-Montaigne, where he teaches Arabic cinema and drama in the Department of Arab Studies and the Department of Performing Arts. He also supervises the scientific program “Otherness and its portrayals in Arab-Muslim culture” at the TELEM research center and co-directs the collection “Monde Arabe / Monde Musulman” by the publishing house of that very university. He is also the director of the “University Meetings on the Performing Arts in the Arab World,” which is held in Bordeaux every two years, and manages the French theatre magazine “Horizons / Théâtre.”

    His research focuses on Arab theater in general, and more specifically on Moroccan theater. He is also concerned with issues related to translation and adaptation in Arab theater, as well as modern and contemporary forms of stage arts throughout the Arab world. Some of his most notable publications include L’Autre et ses représentations dans la culture arabo-muslmane (The Other and Its Representations in Arab-Muslim Culture, co-editor, 2016); Le théâtre marocain à l’épreuve du texte étranger: traduction, adaptation, nouvelle dramaturgie (Moroccan Theater Put to the Test by Foreign Texts,  2017) and L’adaptation dans le théâtre marocain: des débuts jusqu’à nos jours (Adaptation in Moroccan Theater,  2020).

    Bachelor’s degree in Modern Languages and Their Literatures (UCM)
    The existence of modern philology studies has already had a presence of over a half-century at the UCM. The degree program was created in 1954 and given the name “Modern Philology Section,” along with the existing sections of Romance, Classical and Semitic Philology at the School of Philosophy and Letters. This Modern Philology Section was, in turn, divided into four sub-sections: German, French, English and Italian. In 1975, with the creation of the European Higher Education Area, the previous degree plans in German Philology, French Philology, Italian Philology and Romance and Slavic Philology were replaced by the Degree in Modern Languages and Literatures.

    This bachelor’s degree program, based on the former philologies, was designed with a multilingual approach and a new structural model that includes a Major and Minor. Under this system, there is training in a primary language and its literature (approximately two-thirds of the total credits in the degree), which must be combined with a second language and its literature (approximately one-third of the total credits in the degree).
    More information about the degree
  • Impact of Covid-19 in the Mediterranean

    November 11, 20206:30 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:30 p.m.
    In English, without translation.
    Third conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria series, given by Nathalie Tocci, director of the Istituto Affari Internazionali and Special Advisor to the High Representative of the EU and Vice President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell. You can watch it live on our Youtube channel.
    In the regions surrounding the European Union, multilateralism is a means and not an end. The end is to strengthen the resilience of state and society as well as promoting conflict resolution. This often requires or at least benefits from multilateralist approaches. At other times, however, this is not the case.

    There is a European belief or reflex to think that all forms of multilateralism are good. Nevertheless, in order to discern whether multilateralism must be promoted and, if so, to define its character, the European Union must specify the objectives to be achieved. Thus, experts seem to agree that multilateralism aiming towards the South and East of the EU should only be sought when it contributes to dealing with fragility and conflict.

    These issues will be addressed in the conference “Covid-19’s Impact on the Mediterranean,” to be given by Nathalie Tocci, Director of the Istituto Affari Internazionali, an honorary professor at the University of Tübingen and a Special Advisor to the EU High Representative and Vice President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell. The meeting will be introduced and moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator, and Cristina García Fernández, coordinator of the EU and the Mediterranean Master’s Degree program at the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM).

    Casa Árabe has organized this third conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) program with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program “EU and the Mediterranean: Historical, Cultural, Political, Economic and Social Basis,” given by the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). Students in this program and other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to register their attendance through Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel chat, so that they may earn the Aula Árabe certificate, for which they are required to attend at least half of the conferences in the event series.

    Nathalie Tocci
    Tocci is the director of the Istituto Affari Internazionali and an honorary professor at the University of Tübingen. She is a Special Advisor to the EU High Representative and Vice-President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell, and was formerly the Vice-President under Borrell’s predecessor, Federica Mogherini. As such, she was responsible for drafting the “European Global Strategy” and worked on its implementation. She has been a member of the Executive Board of the Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi since May 2020.

    She earned her PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics (2003), an MA in Development Studies from the same university (1999) and a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford’s University College (1995). Her research revolves around European foreign policy, conflict resolution, the Middle East and the Mediterranean. She has held research positions at the Center for European Policy Studies in Brussels, the Transatlantic Academy in Washington and the Robert Schuman Center for Advanced Studies in Florence. Her most notable recent publications include “Framing the EU’s Global Strategy” (2017), she co-edited “The EU, promoting regional integration and conflict resolution” (2017), and she co-authored “Turkey and the European Union” (2015).

    Master’s degree program on “EU and the Mediterranean: Historical, Cultural, Political, Economic and Social Basis” (UCM)
    This program is the result of a process of integration among academic networks dealing with European and Mediterranean issues. Its objective is to train professionals with a specific outlook who are able to promote integration between Europe, and the southern and eastern Mediterranean. Its highest priority lines of work are: furthering European construction and the operation of its institutions, developing legal and economic Infrastructures, development cooperation, European socioeconomic culture, EU policies and, above all else, its  Euro-Mediterranean outreach.
    Further information on the Master’s degree program

    Aula Árabe
    Aula Árabe is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its goal is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the training provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts at the international level in various subjects related to the Arab world. Its mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Each student receives a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record, when the conference is held online.

    Organized by: Casa Árabe and Universidad Complutense de Madrid
  • Anthropology, Tourism and Orientalism 
    The Fez medina in 2015. Maria Cardeira da Silva / CRIA

    Anthropology, Tourism and Orientalism 

    November 18, 2020
    ONLINE
    The conference will be held on November 18 at 7:00 p.m., only for students in the related programs.
    On Wednesday, November 18, the fourth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria program will be given by Maria Cardeira da Silva of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa.
    What ties exist between Tourism, Anthropology and Orientalism? They all arose from the same historical constructs which gave led to Western modernity. However, with the passage of time, their relationships have become problematic. Maria Cardeira da Silva, a professor of Anthropology at the School of Social and Human Sciences of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, will briefly analyze the ways in which they overlap and the tensions existing in light of contemporary global regimes of patrimonialization and humanitarianism. To do this, Cardeira da Silva will use evocative examples of processes with which she herself has provided assistance in her field work, including the conversion and commercialization of colonial hotels in Morocco, anthropological practice, humanitarianism and solidarity tourism in Mauritania, and the “vernacularization” of Orientalism in Portugal. The meeting will be presented and moderated by Javier Rosón, the coordinator of Casa Árabe in Córdoba, and Ángeles Ramírez, a professor of Social Anthropology at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM).

    Casa Árabe has organized this fourth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) series with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. The students in this program and the other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to join the event live by video conference. All other audiences will be able to access it as of November 20 on Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel.

    Maria Cardeira da Silva
    A professor at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, she has a PhD in Social and Cultural Anthropology and a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the same university. Her fields of research include: gender, tourism and heritage in Arab and Islamic contexts (Morocco and Mauritania), and the uses of Islamic heritage in Europe (Portugal and Spain). She is the author of “Um Islão Prático” (“Practical Islam,” Celta, 1999), a product of her research on gender identities and women’s daily life in a neighborhood within the medina of Salé, Morocco, where she lived for two years. She has also done ethnographic work in historically Portuguese places such as Mazagan and Azzemour (Morocco), Ouadane (Mauritania) and Mazagan (Amapá, Brazil). As a result of her interest in issues of Islamophobia, national and European public policies relating to Islam and Islamic heritage in Europe, she has headed the Peripheral Orientalisms Network.
    She is currently involved in several research projects, including HERILIGION (The Inheritance of Religion and the Sacralization of Heritage in Contemporary Europe), CAPSAHARA (Critical Approaches to Politics, Social Activism and Islamic Militancy in the Western Sahara Region), in which she is completing fieldwork in Mauritania to explore local configurations of activism in women’s rights and transnational feminisms, and TRANSRELEX (Spiritual Transmission and Manufacturing of Religious Heritage in the Mediterranean: Individual experiences), where she traces the path of Jewish heritage in Morocco to explore a dialogue between the construction of religious identity in family and community contexts and the creation of religious heritage.
    Some of her most notable recent publications also include “Moroccan Jewish first-places: contraction, fabrication, dissipation” (International Journal of Heritage Studies, 2017), and she coordinated the monograph “Peripheral Orientalisms” in the Journal of International Mediterranean Studies nº 21 (2016). In 2008, she was awarded the “Lazio tra Europa e Mediterraneo” Award bestowed by the region of Lazio.

    Bachelor’s degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology (UAM)
    Social and Cultural Anthropology is a discipline which studies and analyzes human cultural diversity. It is a field which forms part of the Social Sciences, but with a deeply rooted tradition in the Humanities. The degree program in Social and Cultural Anthropology aims to train professionals with the necessary knowledge to understand and analyze the lifestyles and diversity of social, political, economic and symbolic organizations; professionals of Anthropology capable of applying this knowledge to the interpretation of the current reality and to intervene in the improvement and transformation of our societies.
    An specific new feature of the Degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology of the UAM is its emphasis on the holistic tradition of Anthropology, establishing a dialogue and collaboration with other social sciences and other branches of the Humanities.
    Further information about the bachelor’s degree
     
    Aula Árabe
    Aula Árabe is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its goal is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the training provided in university programs, from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts internationally in various subjects related to the Arab world. Its mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Each student receives a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record, when the conference is held online.
  • The construction of modernism in Arab world art
    Inside of the Sharjah Art Museum. Photo: Nuria Medina

    The construction of modernism in Arab world art

    November 26, 2020The conference will be held on Thursday, November 26 at 6:00 p.m. (only for students in the related programs).
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. The conference will be held on Thursday, November 26 at 6:00 p.m. (only for students in the related programs).
    On Thursday, November 26, we will be holding the fifth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria program, with Silvia Naef from the University of Geneva. The conference will also include the presentation of a monograph from the journal Awraq, about art in the Arab world.
    Titled “The times of modern and contemporary Arab art,” the most recent issue of Awraq, a journal for analysis and thought on the Arab and Islamic world, is monographically devoted to art in the Arab world for the first time ever, with a special emphasis on the construction of modernism in the twenty-first century and current art in the twenty-first century. Through this publication, Casa Árabe hopes to contribute to filling a void in the production of texts about this topic in our country, though with honorable exceptions. The monograph includes thirteen texts in all by Spanish and international authors.

    Silvia Naef’s conference will discuss the main theme of her chapter in this monograph, namely the period from the 1940s to 1991, which the author claims to be the decades when the adaptation of art to Western forms took place, as well as that when references to Arab heritage and culture took on great prominence. It was also during this time period that the formation of an Arab modernity based on local heritage and visual traditions, whether pre-Islamic (Pharaonic or Mesopotamian), Islamic (geometric figures and Arabic calligraphy) or typical of popular art (tattoos, textiles, murals and Berber motifs), became the central theme in the realm of art. Despite the notable differences between individual countries, certain general trends can be observed. Naef will tell us mainly about the first modern groups in Egypt and Iraq.

    After her talk, Maria Gómez, a PhD student at the UCM in Art History completing her thesis on contemporary art from the Middle East, will give an initial reaction. Presented and moderated by Nuria Medina, Casa Árabe’s Culture Coordinator, as well as the coordinator of the monographic issue of Awraq being presented.

    Silvia Naef is a full professor and the director of the Master’s degree program in Middle Eastern Studies (MAMO) at the University of Geneva. Her research focuses on modern art, visual representations and images in the Arab and Islamic world. Her most recent publication is Silvia Naef (2019). “Other Modernities: art, visual culture and patrimony outside the West,” Artl@sBulletin, 9/1. She was one of the founding members of Manazir, a Swiss platform for the study of visual arts, architecture and heritage in the MENA region, at https://manazir.art/.

    Casa Árabe has organized this fifth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) series, with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Fine Arts at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. The students in this program and the other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to join the event live by video conference. All other audiences will be able to access it as of November 27 on Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel.

    “Aula Árabe” is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its objective is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the training provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts from the international scene in various subjects related to the Arab world. Its mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Each student receives a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record, when the conference is held online.

    With the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Fine Arts at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

    Organize: Casa Árabe and Universidad Complutense de Madrid
  • Exclusion and violent religious extremism

    December 09, 202010:30 a.m.
    ONLINE
    Teams (only for students in the associated programs). 10:30 a.m.
    In Spanish and English, without translation.
    On Wednesday, December 9, Amr Elshobaki, a senior researcher at the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, is giving the sixth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria program. On this occasion, the lecture is only intended for students in the associated programs.
    Elshobaki’s conference will examine the relationship between political marginalization and terrorism in Egypt. The speaker will analyze this marginalization from a broad perspective, not only limited to economic factors, but also in relation with social and political claims which somehow lead to violence as the only way out. To discuss this, he will first focus on the political and social phenomena that gave rise to the emergence of a new form of violence and will then look at the discourses of the groups which represent the trend, in an attempt to anticipate their future development and possible tools to counteract them.

    The meeting will be presented and moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator, and Amal Abuwarda Pérez, a professor in the University Master’s Degree program in International Journalism at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (URJC).

    Casa Árabe has organized this conference as part of the event series Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) with the cooperation of the University Master’s degree program in International Journalism at the URJC. The students in this program and the other university programs associated with Aula Árabe will be able to connect live by video conference using the Teams platform.

    Amr Elshobaki
    is a senior researcher at the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies (ACPSS). He was named a member of the Constitutional Committee in 2013 and became a member of the Egyptian Parliament in the years of 2012 and 2014. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Paris 1 (Sorbonne), a Master’s degree from the Institute of Political Studies in Aix-en-Provence and a degree in Political Science from the University of Cairo. Elshobaki is a leading analyst on issues of democratization in Arab countries, Islamist movements, political Islam and international relations, particularly between Arab countries, the United States and Europe, and has been one of the promoters of the Arab Forum for Alternatives.

    His articles have been published in a wide range of newspapers and magazines, including  Al-Masry al-Youm, in which he writes a column, as well as Al-Hayat, al-Sharq al-Awsat and Le Figaro France, and he has authored several books and reports. This year, he just had published “Limits of change in the dogmatic structure of violent extremist groups: a comparison between Islamic Jihad, the Islamic Jama’a and ISIS” (ACPSS & Tabah Foundation, 2020). Some of his most notable publications include: as editor and co-author, A look on local journalism in the Arab region: Do we begin from here? (Arab Forum For Alternatives & Swedish Institute Alexandria, 2019); “Crisis of political parties in Egypt” Arab Strategic Report (ACPSS, 2018);  “The transformation of religious violence groups and the new terror map in Egypt,” in Social Justice in Times of Crises in Egypt (Arab Forum For Alternatives with Fredrich Ebert Stiftung/Egypt office, 2017), and Les Frères Musulmans des Origines à Nos Jours (The Muslim Brotherhood, from its origins to our day, Khartala, 2009).

    Master’s degree in International Journalism at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos
    The goal of the Master’s degree in International Journalism is to meet the demand for new professionals with expertise in International Journalism who are able to integrate within a professional environment for creating contents within the realm of digital and multimedia-based international relations. It deals with cross-cutting issues that the science of International Relations has studied somewhat late but in a detailed way from the vantage point of journalism: the field of international cultural relations, from the perspective of cultural diversity and interculturalism, and the commitment to human rights. It highlights the need for specialized training to meet the demand for new professionals in this sector, above all in innovative arenas such as Human Rights Journalism, International Solutions Journalism, International Data Journalism and Global Journalism.

    Further information on the Master’s degree program
  • Development strategies in oil-producing countries

    From December 16, 2020 until December 21, 2020The conference will be held on Wednesday, December 16 at 10:30 a.m. (only for students in the associated programs).
    ONLINE
    The conference will be held on Wednesday, December 16 at 10:30 a.m. (only for students in the associated programs).
    In Spanish.
    On September 16, we held the seventh conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria program, given by Aurelia Mañé from the University of Barcelona.
    The conference given by Aurelia Mañé, a professor of Economic Policy at the University of Barcelona (UB), aims to explain what the development model of the so-called oil economies consisted of, while at the same time reflecting upon the context in which the New World Order came about in the 1970s. Part of this explanation will be illustrated by explaining the case of Algeria, a very important role-player in this initiative, though, as a counterpoint, reference will also be made to the Gulf oil monarchies.

    More specifically, after a brief historical overview of the world economic situation in the early 1970s, the main characteristics of the oil economies will be analyzed, then entering into debate over the reasons for their failure in terms of economic development. The meeting will be introduced and moderated by Olivia Orozco, Casa Árabe’s Training and Economic Coordinator, and Juan M. Ramírez-Cendrero, a professor of Development Economics at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM).

    Casa Árabe has organized this fifth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) series with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Economics and Development at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. The students in this program and the other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to join the event live by video conference. All other audiences can access the conference a few days later on the Casa Árabe YouTube channel .

    Aurelia Mañé Estrada
    Aurelia Mañé is a tenured professor at the  University of Barcelona (UB) Faculty of Economics and Business and an honorary researcher at the University of East Anglia School of History in the United Kingdom. She is a member of the Geopolitics and Energy Security Department at the Real Instituto Elcano, as well as a member of several university research groups. In the year of 2008, she created the Central Asia Observatory, and in addition to heading that project, she collaborated with Casa Asia on energy issues.
    She holds a PhD and a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Barcelona, and a Master’s degree in International Studies from the same university. Much of her research has revolved around the study of issues related to energy resources, focusing her work on the regions of Central Asia and Algeria. Some of her most notable recent publications include El gran negocio mundial de la energía (The Great World Energy Model, RBA Libros, 2016), “Energy Interdependence. The Linkage of the Political Economy of Algeria’s Natural Gas With that of the Western Mediterranean Region: A Methodological Approach, with Roger Albinyana, in the journal Revista UNISCI (2018), and she co-authored with Laurence Thieux and Miguel Hernando de Larramendi ”Is Algeria in Transition Towards a Second Republic?” Icaria, 2019).

    The UCM Master’s degree in International Economics and Development
    The world economy is yet again increasingly decisive in understanding an important part of today’s phenomena and troubles. Great international inequalities, the influence of transnational companies, volatility in financial markets, the changing role of some countries on the world stage, the challenges in development and the environment are some of the issues leading us to reach significant conclusions about various societies. All of this justifies the need to study and understand the many aspects and facets of the world economy. The educational process comprising the Master’s degree provides: solid theoretical and methodological foundations for economic analysis, the ability to design and develop research and other studies and specialized knowledge on central aspects in the different fields of world economics and development.
    Further information on the Master’s degree program
  • The State after the Arab uprisings

    December 16, 20206:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m.
    In French, with simultaneous translation into Spanish.
    Eighth conference in the Aula Árabe Universitaria program, given by Luis Martínez (Science Po-CERI). It can be seen on Wednesday, December 16 live on our Youtube channel in Spanish and in French.
    Historically, the nations of North Africa have found their primary bonds of national unity in the struggle against colonial oppression: however, in post-colonial states, what are the bonds which connect individuals, groups and communities? What is it that makes these nation-states “stick together”? If the general interest does not lie at the heart of the state’s actions, how can these bonds of loyalty be maintained? National cohesion has been a major concern for post-colonial North African leaders, as they have sought to build strong states capable of controlling the population. Since independence, uprisings and unrest have structured the relations between society and these states, which nevertheless succeed in restoring order time and time again. They are perceived and analyzed as “robust,” because they seem to control all the disorder.

    The unexpected, unpredictable outbreak of the Arab uprisings have been a true challenge to the stability of North African states. Luis Martínez’s conference analyzes the states’ responses to these issues and highlights the difficulty which North African leaders encounter in dealing with the fragility of these political communities and the weakness of state instruments in ensuring that the nation can live its diversity and plurality peacefully.

    The meeting will be presented and moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator, and Laurence Thieux, a professor of International Relations at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM).

    The conference opens a series of activities and conferences scheduled by Casa Árabe to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the “Arab Springs.” It forms part of the eighth session of Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2), organized with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in International Relations at the UCM. The students in this program and the other university programs associated with Aula Árabe, as well as the general public, will be able to watch it live through Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. Their attendance for the purposes of receiving certification will be recorded through the chat system on that channel.

    Luis Martínez
    Luis Martínez is a political scientist and the research director at the Sciences Po International Research Center (CERI). With a PhD in Political Science from Science Po in 1996, he has been a visiting professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs in New York (2000-2001) and then at the University of Montreal (2007-2008). From 2010 to 2011, he formed part of the School of Government and Economics in Rabat, and in 2012 he joined the Political Science Department of the International University of Rabat (UIR). He has authored numerous books and scientific articles. His most notable books include: L’Afrique du Nord après les révoltes árabes (North Africa After the Arab Uprisings,  SciencesPo, 2019) (published in English by Hurst/Oxford, 2020) ; Algeria. From Opacity to Complexity (Hurst/Oxford, 2016); and Violence de la rente pétrolière (Algérie, Libye et Irak) (Violence of Oil Revenue [Algeria, Libya and Iraq], Sciences Po, 2010) (English language version, Hurst/Columbia, 2012).

    Bachelor’s degree in International Relations (UCM)
    Research on the role-players, events and processes occurring within international society became detached from other social sciences after the end of World War I. For decades, the development of International Relations that took place in Western countries had no correspondence in Spain due to the isolationism that dominated Spanish foreign policy, the country’s incomplete economic development and the little scientific and cultural openness that characterized the Franco era.
    However, the establishment of democracy first and the membership in the European Community later achieved Spain’s full participation in an international stage that underwent an intense process of globalization. The Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations aims to provide a structured, multidisciplinary, comprehensive higher education for the international specialists that are increasingly and urgently needed by Spanish society and the rest of Europe.
    Further information about the bachelor’s degree program
  • Algeria’s <i>Hirak</i> movement: Case study on mobilization for protest in the Maghreb region 
    1. Artist: Fethi Hamlati Title: Demonstration against Bouteflika’s fifth term of office (Blida)

    Algeria’s Hirak movement: Case study on mobilization for protest in the Maghreb region 

    March 02, 20216:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m.
    In French, with simultaneous translation into Spanish.
    On Tuesday, March 2, on our YouTube channel (in Spanish and French), we will be offering the ninth conference in our program Aula Árabe Universitaria 2. It will be given by the Director of Research at the CNRS, Karima Dirèche-Slimani.
    The concept of Hirak includes various embodiments in the Arab region which are quite distinct from each other. This term first came into being in the year 2007, in Yemen, where the Hirak al-Janoubi (Southern Movement) arose, its name a reference to a political faction with separatist leanings. In the year of 2016, the term Hirak sprung up again, but this time in the Moroccan Rif, where the protest was characterized by regionalism and its grassroots nature. As for the citizen mobilization begun in Algeria on February 22, 2019, it also developed its own features, since Algeria’s Hirak can be defined as a peaceful, national, popular movement with major political demands. It should be kept in mind that the word was created on the basis of the three-letter root of the Arabic verb H-R-K (حرك), meaning “movement.” It is a linguistic innovation which demonstrates how the Arabic language and Arab world live, change and express themselves. 

    At this conference, historian Karima Dirèche-Slimani will be discussing the case of Algeria’s Hirak movement by examining the representations of a depoliticized nation mired in the trauma of the 1990s, in order to better understand the dynamics of change that have been built silently from the bottom up by the many role-players in Algerian society.

    Casa Árabe is organizing this conference with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Politics: Sector and Area Studies, offered by the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). This is the ninth session in the program Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2). The session will be introduced by Rafael Bustos, a professor of International Relations at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), and Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator.

    Karima Dirèche-Slimani is a historian, director of research at the CNRS and a specialist in the contemporary history of the Maghreb. She is the author of three books and more than forty scientific articles. She has also edited four collectively authored books. A specialist in the contemporary Maghreb, her writings cover socio-historical issues and critical analysis of Maghreb historiographies from a colonial and post-colonial perspective. Her lines of work involve the topic of religious minorities in the Maghreb, and their political and religious controversies; the matter of Berber identity in relation with politics since independence; the question of national historical narratives and the challenges they have faced in light of Islamist and Berber movements. Her methodological approaches combine oral history praxis with anthropological research in socio-political analysis. Her latest book to be published is titled L’Algérie au présent. Entre Résistance et changements (Algeria in the Present: Between resistance and change) , published by Editions IRMC/Karthala, Paris, May 2019.

    Master’s degree in International Politics: Sector and Area Studies (UCM)
    The Master’s Degree in International Politics: Sector and Area Studies is designed to provide students with the knowledge, skills and capabilities that will enable them to face professional challenges in the public sphere in a favorable and positive way, through an advanced, multidisciplinary education oriented towards academic and scientific activities, with a specialization in international affairs, which are increasingly necessary in both Spanish society and in the rest of Europe. Though the program mainly follows an academic and scientific orientation, it also contributes knowledge and skills to carry out activities related with: political analysis of countries and regions (Arab and Islamic world, Latin America, Europe and Russia); assessment and advisement on security and defense-related topics, including intelligence services; the fundamentals of international political and economic history; studies on the foreign policy of Spain, the European Union and Russia; international observance of elections; the international media and their role in the main conflicts; studies on phenomena such as terrorism and organized crime, and research on topics currently on the international agenda, as they can be found at the main international forums and organizations.


     
  • Studying in Lebanon: Challenges to Syrian Refugee Children 

    March 10, 2021 6:00 p.m. only for students of the programs involved.
    ONLINE
    Zoom 6:00 p.m. only for students of the programs involved.
    In English
    On Wednesday, March 10, we will be holding the tenth conference in our program Aula Árabe Universitaria 2, to be given by Professor Carmen Geha (American University of Beirut). 

    After ten years, the Syrian refugee children living in Lebanon are facing a new reality of long-lasting conflict and fear over returning home. Carmen Geha’s conference will analyze the complexities of being trapped in Lebanon, caught up in the middle of a turbulent political reality. The political system for sectarian-based power distribution in the country creates risks and challenges which can be seen in its educational policy towards Syrian youths. How do young refugees experience the educational system and what political realities make up the paths towards their return? The goal of this conference is to help conceptualize the role of education amid situations of uncertainty about the future and how a host country’s politics can influence the lives and future choices of young refugees.

    Casa Árabe has organized this conference with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Modern Languages at Nebrija University. Introducing the session will be Laura de la Parra Fernández, director of the bachelor’s degree program and a professor at Nebrija University, and Olivia Orozco de la Torre, Casa Árabe’s Training and Economic Coordinator.

    The students in this program and the other university programs associated or collaborating with Aula Árabe Universitaria will be able to join the event by live video conference. All other audiences will be able to view it on Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel.

    Carmen Geha
    Carmen is an activist and Associate Professor of Public Administration at the American University of Beirut. She specializes in mass political mobilization and the challenges to political reform across the Arab Middle East and North Africa. She is a co-founder of the Center for Inclusive Business & Leadership (CIBL) for Women at AUB, a regional reference on readying gender-inclusive employer policies across the region. She is also a co-founder of Khaddit Beirut (the shake-up), a network of 150+ experts implementing a community-driven roadmap for the recovery of Beirut following the port explosion on August 4th. She served also as Founding Director of the “Education for Leadership in Crisis,” scholarship program for Afghan women at AUB.
     
    Carmen manages and oversees large portfolio of research programs and grants in 11 Arab MENA countries focused on women’s economic participation as well as gender, peace, and security. Her work has been published in the Middle East Journal, the British Journal for Middle East Studies, Middle East Law and Governance, Journal of Refugee Studies, and Social Movement Studies among others. Carmen is an activist-scholar and is interviewed regularly on local and international media about events in Lebanon and the region.  
     
    Carmen regularly advised and consults for top international organizations, UN agencies, and government institutions across the region. She has worked in Libya, Myanmar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Iraq among other places. She has most recently consulted as Senior Gender Advisor for UN Women in Lebanon. 
     
    Carmen has a PhD in International Relations from the University of St. Andrews, she was the 2018-2019 fellow in social sciences at the Institute for Advanced Study. She has been a visiting fellow at the WiSER Institute in Johannesburg, Weatherhead Center at Harvard, and the Watson Institute in Brown University. 

    Nebrija University Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Languages
    The bachelor’s degree program in Modern Languages has been created as an innovative alternative to the traditional format for Philology degree programs at Spanish universities. Its innovation arises from the program’s multidisciplinary approach and the training in three foreign languages, all studied in depth at different levels. The combination of a multilingual education with a multidisciplinary approach enables students to become intercultural and linguistic mediators in international organizations, business environments, cultural institutions and educational settings. This multidisciplinary approach is achieved through a flexible curriculum that allows students to choose elective courses in Literature, Economics and Business, Language and Communication, the Humanities (Art, Geography and History, Politics and Society) and New Technologies.

    Aula Árabe
    Aula Árabe Universitaria is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its purpose is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the education provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts in the international arena in various disciplines related with the Arab world. The program mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series, which is open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Each student receives a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record when the conference is held online. 


     
  • Syria: Prospects ten years after the outbreak of revolution 

    March 16, 20216:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m.
    In English, with no translation.
    On Tuesday, March 16, we be showing the eleventh conference in our event series Aula Árabe Universitaria 2, given by the director of the Arab Center for Political research and Studies of Paris (CAREP), Salam Kawakibi, on our YouTube channel
    The war against Syria’s civilian population has been ongoing since 2011, and its impact is profound. Although it is impossible to provide exact figures, the toll has been devastating: it has caused the death of half a million human beings, the destruction of 60% of all infrastructures and the disability of 1.5 million people, with another 200 thousand people in jails and arbitrary detention centers, the internal displacement of half of the country’s inhabitants and the exile of more than six million to different countries in the neighboring region. Although the violence has decreased over the last two years, the situation persists. However, neither the humanitarian catastrophe nor the Syrian people’s demands appear in the headlines anymore. The consequences of this conflict are enormous in terms of international security, and the role of regional and international role-players is undeniable in the Syrian disaster. Within this context, what prospects are there for a potential solution?

    Casa Árabe has organized this conference given by Salam Kawakibi, a researcher in Political Science and International Relations. It is the eleventh session in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2) program, offered with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Relations and African Studies at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM). The session will be introduced by Itziar Ruiz-Giménez Arrieta, coordinator of the Master’s Degree program in International Relations and African Studies at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, and is moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator.

    Salam Kawakibi co-founded the organization The Day After: Supporting a Democratic Transition in Syria (www.tda-sy.org). He is a senior researcher at the University of Saint Andrews’ Centre for Syrian Studies, a co-founder and member of the advisory board of the Mediterranean Citizens Assembly Foundation (MCAF) (www.fundacionacm.org), a member of the board of the Institute for Research and Studies on the Arab World and Mediterranean in Paris, and a member of the scientific committee of Confluences, a Parisian journal which focuses on the Mediterranean region. From 2009 to 2011, Kawakibi was the head researcher at the University of Amsterdam’s Department of Political Science. Prior to that, from 2000 to 2006, he was director of the Institut Français du Proche-Orient in Aleppo.  He earned his Advanced Studies Diploma (DEA) in Political Science from the Aix-En-Provence Institute of Political Studies and another in International Relations from the University of Aleppo, as well as his bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Aleppo. He has had numerous articles and essays  published in specialized journals and various works in Arabic, French, Spanish, German and Turkish. 

    Aula Árabe Universitaria is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its purpose is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the education given in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, providing students contact with relevant speakers and experts in the international arena in various disciplines related with the Arab world. The program mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series, which is open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Each student receives a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record when the conference is held online.

    Master’s degree program in International Relations and African Studies at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM)
    The purpose of the Official Master’s degree in International Relations and African Studies is to provide students with a broad understanding of international and transnational phenomena, the role of states, international organizations and non-state role-players (social movements, armed groups, the media), regional integration processes, the international security and peace-building agenda, development cooperation, human rights, migratory movements, and so forth. This training is combined with an in-depth approach to knowledge about the political, economic, social, cultural and gender-related realities of Sub-Saharan Africa, and the many global and transnational dynamics which influence it. The Master’s degree provides specific in-person training to graduates in different degrees who wish to undertake a career in fields and with profiles that have an international dimension (journalism and international analysis, diplomacy and international organizations, consulting and international trade, development cooperation, etc.). The classes are taught in Spanish, but a B2 level of English is required, because some of the teaching materials and special conferences are in English. 


    Organized by: Casa Árabe and Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

    Organize: Casa Árabe and Universidad Autónoma de Madrid 
  • Democratization versus democracy: how European policy failed the Arab uprisings 

    April 07, 20216:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m.
    In English, with no translation.
    The twelfth session of Aula Árabe Universitaria and Aula Mediterránea, given by Andrea Teti (University of Aberdeen), will be taking on Wednesday, April 7. You can watch it live on our Youtube channel.  
      
    After a lukewarm reaction to the Tunisian revolution that erupted in late 2010, the European Union proclaimed that it had learned the lessons of the Arab uprisings in early 2011. So, what were those lessons according to the EU? Primarily that previous policy had failed in two ways: first of all, that support for authoritarian regimes in the name of “stability” and gradual “reformism” was wrong both pragmatically (because it did not lead to democratization) and ethically (since it did not “fit in with Europe’s core values”). And secondly, that supporting democracy and development had to undergo a matching “paradigm shift” and become much more inclusive than the EU had thought before the “Arab Spring.” Unfortunately, these commitments translated into little more than words. In fact, Brussels was prioritizing “stability” again by 2015 (as demonstrated by its acquiescence to the coup in Egypt). But even before then, contradictions had already arisen in the EU’s stance: despite announcing that it was breaking away from the past, closer examination showed that it had not been able to “change” the “paradigms” it had allegedly acknowledged as unsustainable.

    How could the Union and its Member States publicly proclaim they were breaking away from their earlier Neighborhood Policy while reproducing the same strategies in the “Southern Partnership”? Part of the answer is clearly geopolitical and geo-economic. However, if we examine this even more closely, a careful linguistic analysis of EU policy strategy documents shows that their outlook on new policy strategies reproduces the logic, and sometimes even the terminology, of the Neighborhood Policy prior to the uprisings. This lack of a response and innovation is especially serious because, according to a painstaking analysis of public opinion poll data over the last decade, populations across the Arab MENA region have clearly and repeatedly pointed out that they “demand democracy,” especially a form of democracy which is socially just. This is not simply a matter of failures in institutional learning, but also that these failures are actively contributing to destabilization of the Mediterranean on both shores.

    Casa Árabe has organized this twelfth lecture in the Aula Árabe Universitaria event series, to be given by Andrea Teti, a professor of International Relations at the University of Aberdeen, with the cooperation of the UAM’s EUROSUD - South European Studies Master’s program. As part of the pairing of both the Aula event series, the conference will also be the sixteenth session in IEMed’s “Aula Mediterrània” program, in collaboration with the Master’s degree program in Diplomacy and International Organizations at the CEI/UB. Ignacio Gutiérrez de Terán, a professor of Arab and Islamic Studies at the UAM, will be participating in the presentation on behalf of the EUROSUD Master’s degree program, as will Jordi Quero, coordinator of the CEI/UB Master’s program, who will give the initial reaction on behalf of that program. The event will be moderated by Karim Hauser, Casa Árabe’s International Relations Coordinator.

    Andrea Teti 
    Andrea Teti is the director of ECIA’s research group on societies. He holds a Master’s degree and a PhD from the University of St. Andrews, and is currently an International Relations professor at the University of Aberdeen, as well as a visiting professor at the University of Cagliari’s GramsciLab. His main research interests and publications focus on European and US democracy promotion policies in the Middle East, Egyptian politics, Islamist movements, civil society and labor movements. He is also a co-director of the Critical Middle East Studies (CMES) work group at the British Society for Middle East Studies. Prior to that, he was a professor of International Relations at the Universities of Exeter and Plymouth, a visiting professor at the University of Turin and the Anna Lindh Chair of Euro-Mediterranean Studies at the University of Salerno. 

    Master’s degree program in Democracy and Governance (UAM) and Erasmus Mundus EUROSUD-South European Studies Master’s degree program (UAM)
    Official Master’s degree of the Official Graduate Program at the School of Law, intended for university graduates with a background in Political Science, other social sciences and related disciplines, such as History or Journalism, who wish to specialize as technicians and managers of public and/or private organizations, public policy analysts, socio-political analysts, consultants, international advisors or professors and researchers. Starting in the academic year of 2019-2020, students will share classes with the students from the Erasmus Mundus South European Studies (EUROSUD) Master’s degree program put on by the University of Glasgow, with which six European universities are associated, as well as other research centers and cultural organizations. Since the program was first held in 2006, the Master’s degree in Democracy and Governance has been ranked one of the best Master’s degree programs in Political Science on the list published by the newspaper El Mundo. 

     Aula Árabe is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its purpose is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the education provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts in the international arena in various disciplines related with the Arab world. The program mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series, which is open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. All students receive a “Passport to the Arab World,” in which they are given seals showing that they attended the conferences. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is registered in the passport when the activity is in person, and in an online record when the conference is held online.
     
  • Was the Qur’an known in Early Modern Spain? 
    Photo: © National Library of Spain

    Was the Qur’an known in Early Modern Spain? 

    April 13, 20216:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m.
    In Spanish.
    On Tuesday, April 13, the thirteenth lecture in the Aula Árabe Universitaria II event series will be given by Nuria de Castilla (EPHE - Paris). You can watch it live on our YouTube channel

    Although seemingly unbelievable, two libraries in Madrid, the National Library of Spain and the Tomás Navarro Tomás Library (CCHS-CSIC), house the most important collections of Qur’anic manuscripts from the Mudéjar and Moorish periods known today (fifteenth to early seventeenth centuries). These documents, some of great beauty and size, form a unique, exceptional range of the production and transmission of the Qur’an in the Iberian Peninsula’s Muslim communities during the times of Kings Charles V, Philip II and Philip III. 

    Professing the Muslim religion was forbidden in the Hispanic kingdoms from the early sixteenth century, and as of the middle of that century use of the Arabic language, whether spoken or written, was not allowed either. However, the manuscript copies that have been preserved, which are only a small sample of what must have been produced at the time, indicate in wondrous silence that both Islam and Arabic were current in Early Modern Spain, and that the Qur’an was a well-known book within these communities, used by different members of society for different purposes. Without a doubt, the proximity of North African neighbors and the Ottomans bore an influence. 

    It is within this context that we are holding the conference “Was the Qur’an known in early modern Spain?,”to be given by Nuria de Castilla, the professor of “Arabic Manuscript History” at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes of Paris Sciences et Lettres. She will be presenting the latest unpublished results of her research on this topic. 

    Organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid’s PhD program in Religion Sciences, the conference will be the thirteenth session in the Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 program and will form part of a series of conferences on the circulation, readings and interpretation of the Qur’an, the holy book of the Muslims, in different eras and different historical contexts, coinciding with the celebration of the month of Ramadan this year. The session will be introduced by Juan Antonio Álvarez-Pedrosa Núñez, director of the UCM University Institute, and moderated by Olivia Orozco de la Torre, Casa Árabe’s Training and Economics Coordinator.

    Nuria de Castilla
    Nuria de Castilla is a professor of “Arabic Manuscript History” at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes (Paris Sciences et Lettres). Her main research and teaching interests are the history of books and libraries in the Muslim world, with a special focus on Arabic codicology and paleography, the production and transmission of the Qur’an in the Muslim West and the cultural history of Muslim communities in Early Modern Spain. 

    Before taking up residence in Paris, Nuria de Castilla was a professor and researcher at Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada), the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) in Madrid, the Warburg Institute in London and the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. She continues to collaborate with the last of these institutions through the University Institute of Religion Sciences, where she is an associate researcher. Some of her most notable publications include Una biblioteca morisca entre dos tapas (A Moorish Library Between Two Covers, Zaragoza, 2010) Documentos y manuscritos árabes del Occidente musulmán medieval (Arabic Documents and Manuscripts from the Muslim West, Madrid, 2010), and Qur’anic manuscripts in the Islamic West (2017).

    PhD in Religion Sciences (UCM)
    The main center for the PhD Program in Religion Sciences is the School of Philology, where the program has been taught, under joint responsibility with the Institute of Religion Sciences and the Schools of Philosophy, and Geography and History, since the academic year of 2013-2014.
    Its goal is to carry out scientific and secular analysis of the phenomenon of religion as a determining factor in our societies, as well as those of the past, with the highest levels of scholarly training. The program considers such scientific analysis of religions to be based on thorough study of the cultural contexts in which religious phenomena develop, and thus it is a topic which can only be dealt with from multidisciplinary perspectives, allowing us to approach the complexity of some expressions which, bearing a spiritual nature, are above all human, contextual and historical social constructs which arise in response to specific needs, helping to build up specific societies.

    Aula Árabe Universitaria is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its purpose is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the education provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts in the international arena in various disciplines related with the Arab world. The program mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the series, which is open to students from other partner programs, as well as the general public. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is recorded in an online register when attended remotely. 



    Organize:
    Organized by: Casa Árabe and Universidad Complutense de Madrid
     
  • Poems and revolutionary movements in the Arab world 

    April 19, 20216:00 p.m.
    ONLINE
    Casa Árabe’s YouTube channel. 6:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m.
    In English.
    Fourteenth conference in the program Aula Árabe Universitaria II, to be given by Francesca Corrao, a professor of Arabic language and culture (Luiss University of Rome). The event will be held on April 19, live on Youtube.  

    After colonial rule, Arabs faced a season of hope, but other regional crises soon arose. The disillusionment of avant-garde Arab intellectuals caused by the Arab armies’ disappointing performance in the Six-Day War was subsequently worsened by the repressive policies of Arab governments. As a result, avant-garde poets gradually distanced themselves from their initial enthusiasm for the political achievements of their leaders and turned their attention back to the dramatic realities of their populations. The poets’ metaphors expressed the desires of the people. By doing this, and as a result of efforts by intellectuals, despite decades of repression and censorship, cultural debate kept young Arabs’ aspiration to see their rights and freedoms respected alive in their hearts. Thus, an echo of the revolts, filled with the hope that stirred Arab youth in 2011, still lingers in literature. 

    In many Arab countries, when the uprisings turned into the tragedy of counter-revolution in the form of a savage wave of repression leading to civil wars, poets lent their voices once again to expressing disillusionments. 

    This conference on “Poems and revolutionary movements in the Arab world” by Francesca Corrao, a professor of Arabic Language and Culture at Luiss University in Rome, will provide a few examples of poems which describe the unfolding of events and the heartbreak and pain over the loss of loved ones and places, in an attempt to inspire hope even where it was, and still is, difficult to imagine a better future. 
    Casa Árabe has organized this fourteenth session in the event series Aula Árabe Universitaria 2 (AAU2), with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Semitic and Islamic Studies at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). The session will be introduced by Victoria Khraiche Ruiz-Zorrilla, an associate professor of Arabic Language and Literature at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), and will be moderated by Nuria Medina, Casa Árabe’s Coordinator of Cultural Programs

    Francesca Maria Corrao
    Francesca Maria Corrao is a tenured professor of Arabic Culture and Language at Luiss University of Rome’s School of Political Science, the director of the MISLAM Program (Master in Islamic Countries’ Economics and Institutions) at the same university’s School of Government. Prior to that, she was also a professor at the University of Naples “L’Orientale” (1996-2011) and a visiting professor at the École Pratique des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (2007), Fudan University (Shanghai 2017), Science Pò (Menton 2017/19), Cairo, Beirut, Amman, Cambridge and Oxford. Her academic work focuses on Arab and Islamic culture and history, and Mediterranean studies. Among other committees, associations and research groups, she is a member of the Editorial Board of the open access online journal Arabic and World Literature: Comparative and Multidisciplinary Perspectives and a member of the scientific committee of many other journals on Arabic culture and literature (Rivista Africa e Orienti, Semicerchio, ARABLIT, Journal of Arabic Literature, Dialoghi Mediterranei, journal of the Istituto Euro-Arabo). Her most notable books include: with R. Redaelli, States, Actors and Geopolitical Drivers in the Mediterranean (Palgrave 2021, at press); I cavalieri, le dame e i deserti. Storia della poesia araba (Istituto per l’Oriente, 2020); In guerra non mi cercate. Poesia araba delle rivoluzioni e oltre, with O. Capezio, E. Chiti and S. Sibilio (Le Monnier, 2018).

    Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) Bachelor’s Degree in Semitic and Islamic Studies
    Semitic philology studies, combined with the Hebrew and Aramaic languages, form part of the foundational origin of the Universidad Complutense and its first great work, the Complutense Polyglot Bible. In 1843, once it had become a Central University, Arabic Studies began. In 1994, this was extended to include the teaching of Persian and Turkish, under Islamic Studies, and the teaching of ancient Near Eastern languages in Hebrew Studies. Completing this degree program at UCM enables students who choose the major in Arabic to learn and successfully use the Arabic language, which is spoken by more than 400 million people, and to become familiar with Islamic culture, which includes over 1.5 billion Muslims. They also study the Hebrew language and relevant Jewish culture. They also acquire knowledge of Persian or Turkish, as well as learning about their literature. Those who opt for the Hebrew major are able to learn the Hebrew language and Jewish culture in depth. They also learn Arabic up to a communicative level, as well as Muslim culture. They can expand upon their knowledge of Semitic languages with studies in Aramaic and ancient Near Eastern languages. 

    Aula Árabe Universitaria is an annual inter-university program organized by Casa Árabe with the cooperation of the universities in the Autonomous Region of Madrid. Its purpose is to promote knowledge about the Arab world and complement the education provided in university programs from a multidisciplinary perspective, offering students contact with relevant speakers and experts in the international arena in various disciplines related with the Arab world. The program mission is also to promote inter-university cooperation. Each university program is assigned a lecture in the conference series, which is open to students of the other associated programs, and to the general public, as well. Those students who have attended over 50% of the conferences are awarded with an Aula Árabe Universitaria certificate. Attendance is recorded in an online register when attended remotely.

    Organized by: Casa Árabe and Universidad Complutense de Madrid

     
Sept. 28, 2021 – AAUII.1 Opening conference
Connected crises in the Arab world Iraq, Syria and Lebanon
Lina Khatib, Chatham House
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in Contemporary Arab and Islamic Studies, UAM)

Oct. 28, 2020 – AAUII.2
Theater written in Moroccan Arabic: past and present
Omar Fertat, Université Bordeaux-Montaigne
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Modern Languages and Literatures, with Arabic as a major, UCM)

Nov. 11, 2020 – AAUII.3
Impact of Covid-19 on the Mediterranean
Nathalie Tocci, Istituto Affari Internazionali    
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program on the EU and Mediterranean: Historical, Cultural, Political, Economic and Social Basis, UCM)

Nov. 18, 2020 – AAUII.4
Anthropology, tourism and Orientalisms
Maria Cardeira Da Silva, Universidade Nova de Lisboa
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Social and Cultural Anthropology, UAM)

Nov. 26, 2020 – AAUII.5
The construction of modernism in Arab world art [Presentation of the journal Awraq]
Silvia Naef, University of Geneva            
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Fine Arts, UCM)

Dec. 9, 2020 – AAUII.6
Exclusion and violent religious extremism
Amr Elshobaki, Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Journalism, URJC)

Dec. 16, 2020 – AAUII.7
Development strategies in oil-producing countries  [Seminar on Political Economics and Rentier States in the Arab countries]
Aurelia Mañé, University of Barcelona
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Economics and Development, UCM)

Dec. 16, 2020 – AAUII.8
The State after the Arab uprisings
Luis Martinez, CERI (Paris)
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in International Relations, UCM)

March 2, 2021 – AAUII.9
Algeria’s “Hirak” movement: case study on mobilization for protest in the Maghreb region
Karima Dirèche-Slimani, CNRS, Aix-en-Provence
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Politics: Sector and Area Studies, UCM)

Oct. 3, 2021 – AAUII.10
Studying in Lebanon: Challenges to Syrian Refugee Children
(shared experience with Aula Mediterrània)
Carmen Geha, American University of Beirut
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Modern Languages, Universidad Antonio de Nebrija)

March 16, 2021 – AAUII.11
Syria: Prospects ten years after the outbreak of revolution
Salam Kawakibi, Arab Center Paris
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in International Relations and African Studies, UAM)

 April 7, 2021 – AAUII.12
Democratization versus democracy: how European policy failed the Arab uprisings
Andrea Teti, University of Aberdeen   
(with the cooperation of the EUROSUD - South European Studies Master’s degree program, UAM)

Apr. 13, 2021 – AAUII.13
The Qur’an in Al-Andalus
Nuria Martínez de Castilla, EPHE (Paris)
(with the cooperation of the PhD program in Religion Sciences, UCM)

Apr. 19, 2021 – AAUII.14
Literature and revolutionary movements in the Arab world
Francesca Maria Corrao, Universidad Luiss di Roma
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in Semitic and Islamic Studies, UCM)

Apr. 28, 2021 – AAUII.15
What do we know about Jihadist radicalization?: predetermined ideas, realities and questions
(shared experience with Aula Mediterrània)
Laurent Bonelli, Université Paris X Nanterre
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in Political Science and Public Affairs, Saint Louis University - Madrid Campus)

May 4, 2021 – AAUII.16
Readings of the Qur’an from the Middle Ages to the Modern Day
John Tolan, University of Nantes
(with the cooperation of the bachelor’s degree program in History, UAM)

May 18, 2021 – AAUII.17
The Qur’an: another reading, another translation

Youssef Seddik, Tunisian writer and philosopher
(with the cooperation of the Master’s degree program in Religion Sciences, UCM)

 
Omar Fertat
Fertat is a researcher and professor of Theater at the University of Bordeaux-Montaigne, where he teaches Arab film and drama at the Arab Studies Department and in the Performing Arts Department. He also supervises the scientific program “Otherness and its portrayals in Arab-Muslim culture” at the TELEM research center and co-directs the collection “Monde Arabe / Monde Musulman” by the publishing house of that very university. He is also the director of the “University Meetings on the Performing Arts in the Arab World,” which is held in Bordeaux every two years, and manages the French theatre magazine “Horizons / Théâtre.”
His research focuses on Arab theatre in general, and more specifically on Moroccan theater. He is also concerned with issues related to translation and adaptation in Arab theater, as well as modern and contemporary forms of stage arts throughout the Arab world. The most notable of his latest publications include “L’Autre et ses représentations dans la culture arabo-muslmane” (co-editor, 2016); “Le théâtre marocain à l’épreuve du texte étranger: traduction, adaptation, nouvelle dramaturgie” (2017) and “L’adaptation dans le théâtre marocain: des débuts jusqu’à nos jours” (2020).

Nathalie Tocci
Tocci is the director of the Istituto Affari Internazionali and an honorary professor at the University of Tübingen. She is a Special Advisor to the EU High Representative and Vice-President of the Commission, Josep Borrell, and was formerly the Vice-President under Borrell’s predecessor, Federica Mogherini. As such, she was responsible for drafting the “European Global Strategy” and worked on its implementation. She has been a member of Eni’s Executive Board since May of 2020.
She holds a PhD in International Relations from the London School of Economics (2003), an MA in Development Studies from the same university (1999) and a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford’s University College (1995). Her research focuses on European foreign policy, conflict resolution, the Middle East and the Mediterranean. She has held research positions at the Center for European Policy Studies in Brussels, the Transatlantic Academy in Washington and the Robert Schuman Center for Advanced Studies in Florence. Her most notable recent publications include “Framing the EU’s Global Strategy (2017), co-editing “The EU, promoting regional integration and conflict resolution (2017) and, as a co-author, “Turkey and the European Union (2015).”

Maria Cardeira Da Silva
She is a tenured professor at the Universidad Nova de Lisboa and is a Vice-President of Centro Em Rede de Investigação em Antropologia (CRIA) in Lisbon, where she founded the group Estudos em Contextos Árabes e Islâmicos – Azimut. She forms part of the project “HERILIGIÓN - The legacy of religion and the enshrinement of heritage in contemporary Europe” (HERA), and is also a consultant on the project “CAPSAHARA.”
With a PhD in Social and Cultural Anthropology and a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the same university, her research areas include: gender, tourism and heritage in Arab and Islamic contexts (Morocco and Mauritania), and the uses of Islamic heritage in Europe (Portugal and Spain). She is the author of “Um Islão Prático,” published in 1999 as a result of her research on gender identities and women’s daily life in a neighborhood within the medina of Salé, Morocco, where she lived for two years. Her latest publications also include “Castelos a Bombordo: Etnografias de Patrimónios Africanos e memórias Portuguesas” (CRIA, 2013), and she coordinated the monograph “Peripheral Orientalisms” in the journal Revista de Estudios Internacionales Mediterráneos, issue number 21 (2016). In 2008, she was awarded the “Lazio tra Europa e Mediterraneo” Award bestowed by the region of Lazio. 

Silvia Naef
Naef has been a tenured professor in the Arab Studies Section at the University of Geneva since 2006. Prior to that, she taught at the Universities of Basel and Tübingen (1995-2001) and was a visiting professor in Toronto (2007-2009) and Sassari, Italy (2012). Furthermore, she was the leading director of the research project “Other Modernities: Patrimony and Practices of Visual Expression Outside the West,” funded by the Fonds National Suisse de la Recherche Scientifique (2013-16). She was one of the founding members of Manazir, a Swiss platform devoted to study of the visual arts, architecture and heritage in the MENA region, as well as the Manazir Journal.
A specialist on modern art in the Arab world and the topic of images in Islam, she has had works published in several languages, in academic publications, exhibition catalogues and works intended for a wider audience. Her works include “Y a-t-il une question de l’image en Islam?” (2nd edition, 2015 [2004]), “Échanges, circulations et (ré)appropriations dans l’art moderne du monde arabe” (2017) and “The Arab Apocalypse: Art, Abstraction and Activism in the Middle East” (2019).

Amr Elshobaki
Elshobaki is a senior researcher at the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies (ACPSS). He was named a member of the Constitutional Committee in 2013 and became an MP in the Egyptian Parliament in the years of 2012 and 2014. With a PhD in Political Science from Paris 1 University (Sorbonne), he is a notable analyst on issues of democratization in Arab countries, Islamist movements, political Islam and international relations, particularly among the Arab countries, the United States and Europe, and he has been one of the promotors of the Arab Forum for Alternatives.  
His articles have appeared in various newspapers and magazines, such as Al-Masry al-Youm, Al-Hayat, al-Sharq al-Awsat and Le Figaro France, among others, and he is the author of several books and numerous reports, the most notable of which include: “Les Frères Musulmans des Origines à Nos Jours” (Khartala, 2009); “The Crisis of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt” (al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, 2008), and “Islamists and Democrats: The Problems of Building a Democratic Islamic Movement” (al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, 2004).

Aurelia Mañé Estrada
Mañé is a tenured professor at the University of Barcelona’s School of Economics and Business (UB) and an associate professor at the School of History at the University of East Anglia in Russia. She is a member of the Geopolitics and Energy Security Department at the Real Instituto Elcano, as well as a member of several university research groups. In 2008, she created the Central Asia Observatory, and in addition to heading that project, she collaborated with Casa Asia on energy issues.
She holds a PhD and a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Barcelona, and a Master’s degree in International Studies from the same university. Much of her research has revolved around the study of issues related to energy resources, focusing her work on the regions of Central Asia and Algeria. Among her latest publications are “The Big World Energy Business” (2016), “Energy Interdependence: The Linkage of the Political Economy of Algeria’s Natural Gas With that of the Western Mediterranean Region: A Methodological Approach,” with Roger Albinyana for UNISCI Magazine (2018), and she co-authored “Algeria, In Transition Towards a Second Republic?” with Laurence Thieux and Miguel Hernando de Larramendi (2019).

Luis Martinez
A political scientist and specialist on the Maghreb region and Middle East, Luis Martinez has been the research director at the CERI since 2005. With a PhD in Political Science from Science Po (1996), he was a visiting professor at the Faculty of International and Public Affairs of Columbia University, New York (2000-2001) and then at the University of Montreal (2007-2008). In 2010-2011, he formed part of the School of Government and Economics in Rabat, and in 2012 he joined the Political Science Department of the International University of Rabat (UIR).
His research topics are democratization, the Near East and Middle East, North Africa, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Islam and Libya. His most notable recent works include “L’Afrique du Nord après les révoltes árabes” (2019) and “The State in North Africa: After the Arab uprisings” (2020).

Andrea Teti
Teti is a professor of International Relations at the University of Aberdeen. Before that, he was the lead investigator of the ArabTransformation project (2015-16), a visiting professor at the University of Ghent (2018) and an ACCESS Europe visiting member at the University of Amsterdam (2015-16). He is the co-director and co-founder of the Critical Middle East Studies (CMES) research network of the British Society for Middle East Studies Society (BRISMES), as well as an associate editor of Middle East Critique.
His research focuses on democracy promotion policies in the Euro-Mediterranean region, as well as a wide range of other topics through social science history and theory (labor movements and civil society in Egypt, political parties and elections, knowledge production and political theory). Among his latest publications to be highlighted, he co-authored “The Arab Uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Jordan” (2017) and “Democratization against Democracy: How EU Foreign Policy Fails the Middle East” (2020), as well as co-editing “Hidden Geographies: Informal Power in the Greater Middle East” (2014), and he has authored numerous articles on the aforementioned topics (“Democratization and the Middle East in the Contemporary Global Order,” in The Middle East and Globalization (2012) ; “The EU’s Response to the Arab Uprisings,” in Mediterranean Politics (2012).

Karima Dirèche-Slimani
Dirèche-Slimani is a historian, director of research at the CNRS and a specialist on the history of the contemporary Maghreb region. Her work includes sociohistorical themes and critical analysis of the historiographies of the Maghreb from a colonial and post-colonial perspective. Her research addresses issues such as religious minorities in the Maghreb (Catholics, Jews and neo-evangelicals) and related political and religious controversies; the Berber identity in its relationship with politics since independence; national historical accounts and the challenges they face in light of Islamist and Berber movements.
Some of her most notable recent publications include: “Consigner le hirak: de l’expérience à l’archive” (2020); “Ecrire sur l’Algérie. Les SHS à l’épreuve de la mobilisation citoyenne du 22 février 2019” (2019), and the book “L’Algérie au présent. Entre résistances et changements” (2019).

John Victor Tolan
Tolan is a professor of History at the University of Nantes and a member of Academia Europæa. He has a PhD in History from the University of Chicago, a Master’s degree in History from the same university and “Accreditation as a Research Director” (HDR) from the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales of Paris, as well as a bachelor’s degree in Classical Languages from Yale University.  He has received various awards and distinctions, including two fellowships from the European Research Council (ERC) and the Diane Potier-Boès Award given by the Académie Française.
Tolan works on the history of religious and cultural relations between the Arab and Latin worlds in the Middle Ages and on the history of religious interaction and conflicts between Jews, Christians and Muslims. He has been an educator and lecturer at universities in North America, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. He has authored numerous books and articles, and his latest publications include: “Europe and the Islamic World: A History” (2012) and “Faces of Muhammad: Western Perceptions of the Prophet of Islam from the Middle Ages to Today” (2019). He is one of the four coordinators of the ERC research project “EuQu: The European Qur’an” (2019-2025).

Salam Kawakibi
Kawakibi is a political scientist, executive director of the Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies in Paris (CAREP), an associate professor at the University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and president of the association “Initiative for a New Syria.” Prior to this, he was the main researcher at the University of Amsterdam’s School of Political Science (2009-2011), the assistant director of the Arab Reform Initiative, and director of the French Institute for the Near East (IFPO) in Aleppo (2000-2006).
With a bachelor’s degree in Economics, International Relations and Political Science from the Universities of Aleppo and Aix-en-Provence, he is a member of the advisory board of the Citizens of the Mediterranean Assembly Foundation (FACM) and a member of the editorial board of the journal Confluences Méditerranée. He is also chairman of the advisory board of Ettijahat-Independent Culture and a member of the advisory board of the United Nations’ University Institute for Globalization, Culture and Mobility (UNU-GCM). Kawakibi has had numerous essays published in edited volumes and specialized journals. His research topics revolve around issues of human rights, civil society, migration, media, North-South relations and political reform in the Arab world.

Francesca Maria Corrao
Francesca Maria Corrao is a professor of Arabic culture and language in the Department of Political Science at Luiss University in Rome, as well as being the president of Fondazione Orestiadi. Her research interests include political thought in the Arab world, cultural studies, Middle East history, gender studies, Arabic literature and intercultural dialogue. Corrao has been a visiting professor in Cairo, Beirut, Tunis, Damascus, Paris and Cambridge. She is a member of the Union of European Arabists and Islamists (UEAI) and the executive board of scholars of the European Association for Modern Arabic Literature (EURAMAL). Some of her most notable recent publications include L’Islam non è terrorismo (2018); Islam, Religion and Politics (2017).

Nuria Martínez de Castilla
Martínez de Castilla has been the chair of History and Codicology of Manuscripts in Arabic at the École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE - Paris) since 2016 and is the scientific coordinator of the ERC project “Saadian Intellectual Cultural Life” (2016- 2021), which focuses on study of the Arabic Collection kept at the Monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial  library. Before that, she was a professor with the Department of Arab and Islamic Studies at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) (2010-2016) and a researcher at the Warburg Institute in London (2013-2015).
She holds a PhD in Philology from the UCM, a DEA and a Master’s degree in Hispanic Philology from the UAM and in Arabic Philology from the UCM. Her main research topics are the history of manuscripts in Arabic, codicology, the history of libraries, Islamic-Christian relations in the early modern period, literature and the production of aljamiado texts and the transmission of the Qur’an in the Western Islamic world. Specializing in written production in Arabic and aljamiado (Spanish written in Arabic characters) by Spanish Muslims in the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Martínez de Castilla has catalogued the collection of aljamiado and Qur’anic manuscripts from the CSIC’s Tomás Navarro Tomás Library (Madrid) and the Library of Mudéjar and Moorish manuscripts of France. Her works include the monograph “A Moorish Library Between Two Covers” (2010) and the editing of the volumes “Documentos y manuscritos árabes en el Occidente musulmán” (2011) and, in co-authorship with Déroche and Richard, “Codicology and History of the Book in the Islamic World” (2015).

Youssef Seddik
Seddik is a prominent Tunisian philosopher, writer and anthropologist who specializes in ancient Greece and the anthropology of the Qur’an. With a Diploma of Advanced Studies (DEA) in Greek and Civilization from the Université Paris III - Sorbonne Nouvelle (1988), he received his PhD from the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris (1995).
A Hellenist and Arabist, he has had many books published, as well as translations of works from ancient Greece and the Islamic legacy, works on the Prophet Muhammad, Imam Ali, and studies of the Qur’an, in addition to works on political philosophy and economic thought. His works have sometime stirred up some controversy in the most conservative Muslim circles, including his attempt to publish a version of the Qur’an in the form of a comic book, an undertaking interrupted as a result of the apprehension of Tunisian religious authorities in 1992.
His most notable works include: Dictionnaire historique de la pensée économique arabe et musulmane (with the collaboration of Yassine Essid) (1998); Le Coran : autre lecture, autre traduction (2002); Nous n’avons jamais lu le Coran (2004); Le Grand malentendu. L’Occident face au Coran (2010), and Ce que le Coran doit à la Bible : un dialogue contemporain sur l’islam et le judaïsme (with Isy Morgensztern) (2018)