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August 19, 2014

Visual Reactions: A View from the Middle East

“Visual Reactions: A View from the Middle East” features more than 20 illustrations by Kuwaiti artist and graphic designer Mohammad Sharaf. Inspired by current events, Sharaf’s designs address controversial political and social topics. Sharaf’s illustrations will be on display in the UNC FedEx Global Education Center from Aug. 19 to Oct. 31.

October 1, 2014

UNC Asia Film Series: “Bol” (Pakistan)

Part of the UNC Asia Film Series, Bol is a 2011 Urdu-language social drama Pakistani film written, directed and produced by Shoaib Mansoor. The film follows a religious Muslim family facing financial difficulties caused by too many children and changing times, with a major plot involving the father’s desire to have another son and his rejection of his existing transgender male-assigned-at-birth daughter. This film was part of an entertainment education project by The Johns Hopkins University Center for Communication Programs which entered in a partnership with Shoaib Mansoor’s Shoman Productions in 2009. The objective of the project was to advocate for women’s rights by bringing the focus of media and the elite of Pakistan to family planning and gender issues.

Free and open to the public. For more information, see here.

This film series is sponsored by the South Asia Section of the UNC Department of Asian Studies, the Carolina Asia Center and The Indus Cinema Club. All films are shown in the Nelson Mandela Auditorium at the FedEx Global Education Center, 301 Pittsboro Street (Corner of McCauley and Pittsboro Streets on the UNC Campus).

All screenings are free and open to the public.

October 2, 2014

Prof. Eren Tasar: The Official Madrasas Of Soviet Uzbekistan

Eren Tasar in an historian of modern Central Asia in the Department of History at UNC Chapel Hill. Before coming to Carolina last year he served on the faculty of the Indiana University School of Liberal Arts in Indianapolis. His current book project Soviet and Muslim: the institutionalization of Islam in Central Asia analyzes Soviet policies toward Islam in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan from World War II until 1991.

In this paper he describes the evolution of three officially sanctioned madrasas in Uzbekistan during these decades, arguing that they acquired increasing and unexpected importance for both the Soviet state and Central Asia’s ‘ulama or Islamic scholars.

Eren Tasar’s paper is available here. For more information, see here. Event will take place in the FedEx Global Education Center, Room 4003.

Sponsors: Carolina Seminar, Department of History, and the Center for Slavic, Eurasian & East European Studies.

October 7, 2014

Diaspora Festival of Black and Independent Film: “Al Helm (The Dream): Martin Luther King in Palestine”

View a screening of “Al Helm (The Dream): Martin Luther King in Palestine” directed by Connie Field (Documentary / USA / English / 96 min. / 2014).

In March 2011, Clayborne Carson, director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Institute, travelled to the Holy Land to film his play about King as it is performed by the Palestinian National Theatre and an African-American gospel choir and presented to audiences all over the West Bank. The resulting cultural exchange, creatively exciting, often emotionally charged, and not without tension or tragedy, gives each group a greater understanding of the other and unites them in the common and inspiring bond of artistic endeavor. “Al Helm” illustrates the transformative power of art and how it can move us towards understanding.

October 17, 2014

Interrogating Change: Central Asia Between Timelessness and Mutability

Co-sponsored by the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies, the UNC-CH Department of History, and the Social Science Research Council.

October 22, 2014

UNC Asia Film Series: “Children of Heaven” (Iran)

Part of the UNC Asia Film Series, Children of Heaven is a 1997 Iranian family drama film written and directed by Majid Majidi. The film is about a brother and sister and their adventures over a lost pair of shoes. Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1998.

This film series is sponsored by the South Asia Section of the UNC Department of Asian Studies, the Carolina Asia Center and The Indus Cinema Club. All films are shown in the Nelson Mandela Auditorium at the FedEx Global Education Center, 301 Pittsboro Street (Corner of McCauley and Pittsboro Streets on the UNC Campus). All screenings are free and open to the public.

October 23, 2014

Film Screening & Discussion : “Musings of an Iraqi Patriot”

Musings of an Iraqi Patriot follows one man’s remarkable journey from a life as an accomplished artist in Baghdad to becoming a reluctant refugee in Burlington, North Carolina.  Forced to flee the ongoing violence in Iraq, Ahmed Fadaam knows he’s one of the lucky ones.  Still, he’s haunted by his decision to leave his beloved homeland.  Eloquent and thoughtful, Ahmed gives voice to the millions of ordinary Iraqis whose lives have been irrevocably upended by more than a decade of war.

The screening will be in the FedEx Global Education Center, Room 1005. It will be followed by Q and A with Prof. Carl Ernst and Ahmed Fadaam, the subject of the film.

For more information, contact Aya Zouhri at azouhri@live.unc.edu.

Sponsors: Carolina Center for the Study of the Middle East and Muslim Civilizations, Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies.

October 24, 2014

2014 International Strategic Crisis Negotiations Exercise (Sudan)

Registration Required! Register Here by October 17, 2014

Scenario: Seven years from now, a resumption of the crisis between the Sudan and South Sudan triggers a series of international negotiations to calm the escalating violence.

Location: UNC-Chapel Hill (Details will be provided to registered participants)

Dates: October 24-25 (~ 3:00 pm on 10/24 – ~2:30 pm on 10/25)

On October 24-25, the UNC-TISS National Security Fellowship Program and the Duke Counterterrorism and Public Policy Fellowship Program will host its third “International Strategic Crisis Negotiations Exercise” on the UNC-CH campus. The simulation, exported and facilitated by the Army War College, provides undergraduate and graduate students from UNC, Duke, NCSU, NCCU, and NDU-CISA (Fort Bragg, NC) with the opportunity to experience the complexity surrounding international negotiations. Further, the involvement of current and retired Diplomats and military personnel (of the above-mentioned Fellowship programs and of students enrolled at the National Defense University campus at Fort Bragg) encourages a wide array of perspectives and experiences during the negotiation process, which provides a far more realistic experience than most university programs are able to offer.

This year, the exercise will simulate a crisis in the Sudan. The scenario is set seven years into the future, and the negotiations process is triggered by the resumption of conflict between the Sudan and South Sudan. The negotiation is set-up and controlled under a UN/AU Aide Memoir that encapsulates a chapter system for listing and framing issues, however with no restrictions on which chapters are open to discussion and negotiation. Negotiations are hosted in Addis Abba, Ethiopia, and delegations include the Sudan, South Sudan, China, Ethiopia, Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), Uganda, and the United States.

Senior military officers from the fellowship programs above-listed will serve as Chiefs of Staff for each delegation, and students participating in the event can apply separately to serve as the head of one of the delegations. The simulation is expected to involve 65-75 students from the various campuses.

This event is co-sponsored by the Triangle Institute for Security Studies, the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security, the UNC Curriculum in Peace, War, and Defense, and the Duke Program for American Grand Strategy.

Please contact Jennifer Akin (Jennifer.akin@duke.edu) for additional information.

November 5, 2014

UNC Asia Film Series: “Wadjda” (Saudi Arabia)

This film series is sponsored by the South Asia Section of the UNC Department of Asian Studies, the Carolina Asia Center and The Indus Cinema Club. All films are shown in the Nelson Mandela Auditorium at the FedEx Global Education Center, 301 Pittsboro Street (Corner of McCauley and Pittsboro Streets on the UNC Campus). All screenings are free and open to the public. Tonight’s feature is “Wadjda” from Saudi Arabia.

November 17, 2014

What is the Meaning of Bagels and Falafel?

Shaul Stampfer, professor at Hebrew University and author of books on Eastern European Jewry including Families, Rabbis and Education and Lithuanian Yeshivas of the Nineteenth Century, will point out the history and hidden symbolic meaning behind two classic modern Jewish foods: bagels, an iconic food of American Jewish cuisine, and falafel, which has a similar role as an Israeli Jewish food.

February 23, 2015

The Landscape of Monotheism

Baruch Halpern, the Covenant Foundation Professor of Jewish Studies at University of Georgia, co-director of archeological excavations of the ancient city Megiddo in Israel and author of various books including David’s Secret Demons: Messiah, Murderer, Traitor, King, will discuss how and why monotheism was institutionalized in ancient Judah and Jerusalem, how this ideological strand continued after the exile, and influenced evolving Judaism as a whole, and then Christianity and Islam, what occasioned the idea and its socialization and governmental imposition, and what it signaled to religious traditionalists.

March 5, 2015

Sanam Marvi, Pakistani Sufi/folk singer – “Songs From the Land of Five Rivers”

Songs From the Land of Five Rivers is part of the “Streams of Spirit” series curated by Afroz Taj, professor of Asian studies, UNC-CH, for the Carolina Performing Arts Arts@TheCore Initiative.

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