The Department of Middle Eastern History upholds research and teaching of the annals of the region from Morocco in the West to Iran in the east, from the birth of Islam in the 7th century to present day.
The development of Islam and the political, military, economic and demographic history of the people of the region are examined in the context of three periods: The Middle Ages, the Ottoman Era and the new era.Our students are introduced to a variety of historical sources and obtain comprehensive skills in the languages of the region, first and foremost with Arabic. In addition they obtain skills in the usage of varying research tools.
Studies at the department aim at broadening the students' knowledge of the Middle East's past and its place in Western and Jewish history, as well as equipping them with a critical historical approach. Students also attain the necessary tools for understanding recent regional processes.
Excelling B.A. graduates may continue their studies at our Advanced degree programs, including the M.A. and Ph.D. Tracks. Several of our graduates have joined our staff and that of other leading institutions and universities in Israel and throughout the world. Others have joined the public and administrative sectors, including the Ministry of Education, the Foreign Office, economic and military institutions.
Studies for the degree of B.A. are conducted in two tracks: The single major and double major tracks.
Many of our double-major students enroll also at the departments of History, History of the land of Israel, Geography and Political Science, although some chose other departments.The curriculum of the B.A. degree includes: Introductory courses, workshops (a methodology course, a document-reading course, historical workshops, a text-reading course, pro-seminars and seminars.) and the comprehensive study of written Arabic. First year studies include the following mandatory courses: "Introduction to the History of the modern Middle East," "Introduction to Islam," "Introduction to the geography of the Middle East." Second year studies include "Introduction to the Ottoman Empire," and "The Muslim State during the Middle Ages." Third year studies include "Social history of the Middle East" and "The Economy of the Middle East." During their second year of studies, each student selects a pro-seminar that acquaints him or her with one of the countries of the region. Students are also introduced to regional historical issues such as "Tribe, society and state in Iraq," "Dress, Ornamentation and gender relations in pre-modern Muslim societies," "Religious Construction in Islam" and "The Palestinians during the Mandate era." Third year Seminars examine leading regional issues such as "Mass Media in the Middle East During the 19th and 20th Centuries," "Demography and Politics in the modern Middle East" and "Radical Islam." Students of the Single - Major Track are offered additional courses including International relations in the Middle East, The Political and Social development of the Arab Community in Israel and Islamic Law. They are also offered a large variety of courses in the Arabic language and literature, and a field trip program in Israel and abroad.