CCAS Examines Arab World Diasporas and Migrations in 2011 Symposium, A Sense of Place

On March 21 and 22, CCAS will explore the topic of Arab world diasporas and migrations for its 2011 symposium, “A Sense of Place.”

The voluntary or forcible movement of peoples from and to the Arab world has rarely received inclusive and comprehensive treatment by students and scholars of the region. Yet historically, the Arab world has been at the crossroads of momentous diasporic migrations and settlements that were impelled by a host of social, political, and environmental factors, ranging from economic or cultural opportunities and large-scale demands for labor to political unrest, ethnic discrimination, and international conflict. Indeed, since the imposition of European colonial rule in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and the subsequent emergence of independent post-colonial states, the Arab world has continued to witness important permanent and temporary waves of migration, dispersion and resettlement from, into, and within its geopolitical boundaries.

The Georgetown University Center for Contemporary Arab Studies 2011 Annual Symposium on Arab World Diasporas and Migrations aims to promote the current empirical and analytical understanding of diasporic and migratory patterns in the region and beyond. Participating scholars and specialists from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Australia, and the United States will explore and present historical and contemporary perspectives on Arab diasporas and migrations through the lens of such varied themes as: the patterns of voluntary and forced migrations within the region; the wide-ranging incentives for Arab migrations and their impact on local socioeconomic structures; the integration and visibility of diasporic communities from and in the Arab world; the cultural and intellectual production by and about Arab diasporic and migrant communities.

Location: Copley Formal Lounge, Copley Hall

March 21, 2011

9:30am Welcome

9:35am Plenary Remarks Louise Cainkar, Marquette University

10:00am-12:00pm Historical Perspectives
a. Arabia to Africa: Reassessing the Omani Trade Diaspora in East Africa, 1861-1920, Thomas McDow, George Mason University

b. Reimagining Communities: Sheikh al-Amin Mazrui, al-Islah, and Transnational Arab Muslim Identity in Kenya, 1897-1933, Nathaniel Mathews, Northwestern University

c. ‘Syrian’ Migrants to the Colonial Philippines, 1880s to 1940s, William Gervase Clarence Smith, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

d. A World of Their Own: The Algerian Diaspora and the Making of Algerian Nationalism, Amal Ghazal, Dalhousie University

12:00pm-1:00pm Lunch

1:00pm-3:00pm Diaspora I (Integration)
a. Integration of Diaspora Communities in the Eyes of Orthodox Islamic Scholars, Alexandre Caeiro, Erlangen Centre for Islam and Law in Europe (EZIRE) at the Friedrich-Alexander University

b. The Al-Nour Mosque in Stuttgart, Petra Kuppinger, Monmouth College

c. Making Muslims in Arab Colombia, A. David K. Owen, Harvard University

d. Managing Identities: 2nd Generation Arab American Youth, Louise Cainkar, Marquette University

3:15pm-5:15pm Diaspora II (Visibility)
a. Diaspora Politics and Developmental Empire: The Syro-Lebanese at the League of Nations, Simon Jackson, NYU-Paris

b. Emigration and Domestic Politics in Lebanon, Wendy Pearlman, Northwestern University

c. Armenians in the Contemporary Arab World, Sossie Kasbarian, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

d. iCopts: Engaging and Empowering the Digital Diaspora, Andrew Simon, Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA)

March 22, 2011

9:00am-10:50am Refugees, Asylum, and Forced Migration
a. Analyzing Egypt’s Responses to Forced Migration, Lamis Abdelaaty, Princeton University

b. Between Integration and Separation: Palestinian Refugees in the Old City of Damascus, Faedah Totah, Virginia Commonwealth University

c. The Brain Drain in Iraq Pre and Post 2003 Invasion, Joseph Sassoon, Georgetown University

d. Iraqi Refugees, Elizabeth Campbell, Refugees International

11:00am-12:50pm Uncharted Destinations and Communities
a. Strangers at Home, at Home in a Strange Place: The Contemporary Experience of Migration and the Jawi of Makkah, Muhammad Arafat bin Mohammed, Harvard University

b. A Study of Return Migration, Family Networking, and Development in Lebanon: The Case of Lebanese Nigerians, Peter Adebayo, University of Ilorin, Nigeria

c. Mapping Sudanese ‘Family Values,’ Anita Fabos, Clark University

d. China’s Little Arabia: A Study of the Impact of Arab Migration to the Chinese City of Yinu, Wei Shen, ESSCA School of Management

2:00pm-3:50pm Cultural and Intellectual Expressions
a. Strangers at Home: Intertextuality and Diaspora in Elias Khoury’s Majma‘ al-Asrar, Christina Civantos, University of Miami

b. Arab Studies Through Diasporic Eyes: Philip Hitti and the AUB Alumni Network in Brazil, John Tofik Karam, DePaul University

c. Rethinking Imagined Geographies of the Arab World in Arab American Literary Texts, Carol Fadda Conrey, Syracuse University

d. Occupying Space in the Big Apple, Maysoun Freij, Center for Evaluation at the New York Academy of Medicine

3:50pm-4:00pm Closing Remarks