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While the Middle East and North Africa have been prominent in media and public debate for decades, the region continues to be presented as an enigma in which modernity cannot hold and where mystery and irrational zealotry rule the day. An academic understanding must always find a way around mysteries and enigmata, and in this minor we will therefore address these matters head-on, dispelling common misunderstandings and oversimplifications.

The interdisciplinary minor Middle Eastern Studies is focused on the cultures and societies of the contemporary Middle East. The region is approached from both a humanities and a social science point of view and discusses the Middle East in its cultural, social and political complexity. The minor starts off with The Middle East: History, Politics and Economy after which the student chooses electives in either the area of cultural history or in the area of politics and society.

  • The Middle East: History, Politics and Economy
    Period 1
  • Restricted-choice electives
    Period 1
    Period 2
    Period 3
    Period 4
    Period 5

    You may choose from: 'Iran’s Encounters with the West: The Revolution and its aftermath' (6), 'Bible and Quran' (6), 'Literatures of the Modern Middle East' (6), 'Sex, Gender and Islam in Middle Eastern Politics' (6), 'International Relations of the Middle East' (12), 'Comparative politics of North Africa' (6), 'Zion: Religion and Politics in Judaism and Israel' (6), 'Heroes and Villains of the Middle East: Ancient and Modern' (6) and 'Sharia and Halakha and the Modernization of Religious Law' (6).

Compulsory course
UvA Course Catalogue: Middle Eastern Studies

How to enrol in this minor?

Information about the enrolment and admission for this minor programme can be found in the UvA Course Catalogue.

Master's programme

Those who have successfully finished the minor in Middle Eastern Studies automatically qualify for admission to the Master's programme  Midden-Oostenstudies, provided that one has a Bachelor's degree in the Humanities or the Social Sciences.

Facts & Figures
30 ECTS, 12 months
University Quarter