Arabic Literature, Culture, and Media

Arabic literary and cultural studies in the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies include the study of a broad range of classical and modern literary and cultural texts of the Arabic speaking world and the Arab diaspora. Expertise in the department covers pre-Islamic and classical Arabic poetry as well as modern and contemporary Arabic prose, poetry, film, and cultures. Faculty research has recently focused on the literary contexts of the Arabian Peninsula and Palestine. Emphasis is placed on the historical and political processes that have constituted the particular elements of the Arab world and its cultures, texts, and subjectivities, while also situating them within broader international, postcolonial, and transregional phenomena and trends.

The graduate program in Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures and Media employs transdisciplinary approaches to the study of the literatures and cultures of the Arab world. Consideration of the historical and political contexts out of which texts emerge and into which they intervene is combined with formalist approaches that centrally situate the text as an object of study. Moreover, a diverse array of theoretical and conceptual approaches to literary and cultural production are taken. These include but are not limited to:

  • Gender and sexuality in Arabic literatures, cinema, and cultural production
  • Literary and cinematic aesthetics
  • Nation, nationalism, and national identity formation
  • Resistance and postcoloniality

Graduate students interested in situating the cultural production of the Arab world within a broader transregional scope benefit from AMCM’s extensive range of faculty expertise in South Asia, China, Korea, and Japan.


Visit the department's faculty page for information about current faculty members who specialize in Arabic literature, culture, and media.

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