02 Mar 18

The violence, conflict, displacement, and misery that have transpired in the Middle East since the response to 9/11—the war in Iraq, the rise of ISIS, the Syrian conflict—have posed intellectual and ethical challenges to scholars of the region. Historian Keith David Watenpaugh has chosen to respond in two ways: he has turned his scholarship toward the history of human suffering and compassion, in his award-winning book Bread from Stones: The Middle East and the Making of Modern Humanitarianism (California, 2015), and led a multinational, multidisciplinary project to understand the impact of war on refugee students and develop ways to help them. In this lecture, Watenpaugh connects his historical and humanitarian work as well as reflects upon the professional responsibilities facing scholars confronted by recent events in the Middle East.