Mission Statement

The Middle East Studies Association (MESA) is a non-profit association that fosters the study of the Middle East, promotes high standards of scholarship and teaching, and encourages public understanding of the region and its peoples through programs, publications and services that enhance education, further intellectual exchange, recognize professional distinction, and defend academic freedom in accordance with its status as a 501(c)(3) scientific, educational, literary, and charitable organization.

Read More

Annual Meeting

2019 logo

November 14-17, 2019
Sheraton New Orleans
new orleans, louisiana


Join us in November for MESA’s 53rd annual meeting in The Big Easy. Attendees will enjoy three days of academic panels, a bustling book bazaar, and a film festival screening the latest in documentary films on the Middle East.


Learn More

Academic Freedom

CAF logo

The Committee on Academic Freedom (CAF) seeks to foster the free exchange of knowledge as a human right and to inhibit infringements on that right by government restrictions on scholars. The United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights provide the principal standards by which human rights violations are identified today. Those rights include the right to education and work, freedom of movement and residence, and freedom of association and assembly.

Read More

Become a Member

Tea cup and plate

Be a part of a community of scholars who are passionate about the pursuit of academic knowledge on the MENA region. Join others in helping MESA defend academic freedom and civil and human rights. Share your research at the annual meeting and submit articles for MESA’s journals. Participate on a MESA committee to help recognize outstanding scholarship or work to advance the field. Join MESA today and be a part of something great!

Learn More

Member Announcements

MESA 2019 Program Now Available 

A searchable 2019 annual meeting program is now available here. A printable pdf of the preliminary program is available here.

Security Alerts for Researchers and Students

There are two active security alerts issued by MESA’s Board of Directors for those embarking on research in Egypt and UAE

CAF’s Resource Guide on Canary Mission

MESA’s Committee on Academic Freedom has issued a resource guide for college and university leaders on actions they can take to counteract a secretive, political organization called Canary Mission that uses its website to engage in defamatory attacks against college students and faculty who engage in advocacy for Palestinian rights and academic inquiry about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

Resource Guide

Follow MESA’s Work on the Muslim Travel Ban

When President Trump issued Executive Order 13769 (the first Muslim travel ban) on January 7, 2017, MESA and the ACLU began discussing ways in which MESA could be useful in a lawsuit against the ban. MESA ultimately joined as a plaintiff in IRAP v. Trump. Now in its third iteration, the Muslim travel ban continues to be challenged in court. A timeline of MESA's involvement with the lawsuit:

IRAP v. Trump


18 major scholarly societies join MESA in expressing concern about the Department of Education’s interpretation of Title VI

MESA and 18 other academic associations, representing over 100,000 concerned members, issue letter in response to allegations made by the DoE against the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies, calling attention to the overly narrow and partisan conception of international studies contained in the letter, and pointing to past successes of Title VI programs in educating students and training experts with the needed depth and breadth in languages and regional and international studies.

Read more

Pinned Story

Congressional Briefing-The Geopolitics of Middle East Oil: Historical Perspectives on the Current Crisis

National History Center of the American Historical Association

The recent attacks on oil tankers in the Persian gulf and Saudi oil refineries serve as a stark reminder of the global economy's dependence on petroleum from this politically unstable region. This briefing, which brings together several leading historians of the subject, will explain how the Middle East oil industry assumed such importance in international affairs and American foreign policy.

Read more

Assistant Professor in Arabic Studies

University of Maryland, School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures

The School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at the University of Maryland, College Park invites applications for an appointment as Assistant Professor (tenure-track) of Arabic Studies. For best consideration, apply by Monday, November 4, 2019.

Read more

Database Coordinator, Framing the Late Antique and early Medieval Economy (FLAME) Project

Princeton University Library

Princeton's Committee for the Study of Late Antiquity and Firestone Library have been co-sponsoring the FLAME Project over the past four years. As part of this collaboration, and through the generous sponsorship of the Humanities Council's Comparative Antiquity Initiative, we are inviting applications for the position of a FLAME Project Database Coordinator at the grade of Associate Professional Specialist for the academic year 2020/1. Applications received after October 31, 2019 will not be guaranteed full review.

Read more

Positions in Classical/Medieval Arabic Literature

American University of Sharjah

The Department of Arabic and Translation Studies at American University of Sharjah invites applications for faculty positions in classical or medieval Arabic literature at the rank of assistant or associate professor to begin in Fall 2020, subject to budgetary approval. For best consideration, applicants are requested to submit their complete application materials by November 15, 2019.

Read more

Position in Arabic/English Translation

American University of Sharjah

The Department of Arabic and Translation Studies at American University of Sharjah invites applications for a faculty position in Arabic/English translation at the rank of assistant professor, associate professor or full professor to teach in its graduate and undergraduate translation and interpreting programs, beginning in Fall 2020. For best consideration, applicants are requested to submit their complete application materials by November 15, 2019.

Read more

Two-Year Junior Research Fellowship

Brandeis University - Crown Center for Middle East Studies

The Crown Center for Middle East Studies is offering two-year fellowships to outstanding scholars of Middle East politics, economics, history, religion, anthropology, or sociology for the 2020-2022 academic years. Application Deadline: October 31, 2019

Read more

Religions in Asia

DePaul University

The Department of Religious Studies at DePaul University invites applicants for a tenure track appointment at the rank of Assistant Professor beginning in July 2020. Review of applications will begin immediately, and preliminary interviews of selected candidates will be conducted via Skype.

Read more

All News

PERMES Masthead

PERMES is a database of programs in Middle East studies, experts on the region, and other valuable resources. 


Stay Connected

MESA offers several ways to stay connected, including a young-people-approved presence on Facebook and Twitter, oldie but goodie listservs, and trusty email notifications. To find out more, please follow the link below.

Connect Now