The making of modern Syria
Beyond Crisis lecture series explores the history and culture of the Middle East and North Africa
Since 2015, more than 40,000 Syrians refugees have come to Canada to escape the civil war in their home country. We have all seen the images of the conflict and the toll the war is taking on the people who live there – but how did the situation get like this?
Daniel Neep, a professor from Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, is tackling this topic in his public lecture titled “The Making of Modern Syria” on Jan. 25. This will be the second event in the Beyond Crisis lecture series.
“We have welcomed many Syrian refugees in Winnipeg and across Canada over recent years,” says Jennifer Dueck, the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Chair in the Modern History of the Middle East and North Africa and the lecture series organizer. “This is a conflict that directly affects people living in our midst.”
“The analysis presented in the media frequently focuses on ethnic and religious conflicts, but ignores important economic and social conditions such as unemployment or the availability of affordable food,” she says. “Daniel Neep will help us make sense of the everyday experience that Syrians have lived during this conflict.”
Neep has taught Middle East politics, worked in Damascus as Syria Research Director at the Council for British Research in the Levant, and is the author of Occupying Syria under the French Mandate: Insurgency, Space, and State Formation. His talk will explore the history of Syria and how it got to where it is today, focusing on the role of social class, regional identity and economics.
“(Neep) has spent significant time living and working in Damascus, including during the uprising in 2011-12,” says Dueck. “How is it that the situation in Syria has unraveled to where it is today? Once one of the most stable authoritarian regimes in the region, Syria has now endured years of civil war. Daniel Neep will bring his first-hand experience of Syria during the uprisings, as well as his years of study, to discuss the challenges and prospects for Syria today.”
The Jan. 25 lecture is free and open to the public.
The Making of Modern Syria
Jan. 25, 7 p.m.
McNally Robinson, 1120 Grant Ave.
Part of the Beyond Crisis Series
Presented by the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Chair in the Modern History of the Middle East and North Africa