[R6402] New Directions in Middle Eastern Literatures
Created by Huda J. Fakhreddine
Tuesday, 11/30/21 11:30 am
SUMMARY:At a time when academic journals are under a great deal of pressure and their relevance, as well as their reach, are in jeopardy, the journal Middle Eastern Literatures is embarking on a new phase. This roundtable will convene a group of scholars who are taking over the editorship of the journal and looking forward to exploring new avenues of research and intellectual exchange in the field of Middle Eastern studies. The journal dates back to 2002 but its origins lie in the merger of two older journals Arabic & Middle Eastern Literatures (1998–2001) and Edebiyât: Journal of Near Eastern Literatures (1976–2004). Generations of leading scholars have helped shape the journal and its mission over the years, and in turn, the journal has helped to shape the field. Its course thus far reflects the achievements as well as the difficulties in the fields of study that fall under its geographically and disciplinary wide-ranging purview. At this turn, the new editors will share their vision for the journal in its new era and examine the challenges that face academic publishing in our field such as the issue of access, gatekeeping, the limiting division of fields which keeps the approach to Middle Eastern culture disjointed and narrow in scope. At the core of the journal’s mission is to shift away from EuroAmerica as a reference point and to position Middle Eastern literatures as locations of knowledge rather than merely subjects of study. Some of the questions this roundtable will address include: What are ways to support early-career scholars, precariously employed scholars, and researchers located in the Global South? How do we highlight translation as a scholarly and political practice? What are ways to facilitate interdisciplinary communication within the field of Middle Eastern studies and beyond? How do we stake a claim for alternative theories, practices, and orientations of comparative literary studies?