Test # 1

Your mission is to write a typed, double-spaced 4-6 page essay. It is due on Friday March 5 at 5:00pm in my box on the 200-wing of Peck Hall.

Select an "event" that occurred in the Middle East region between 1900 and 1950 and explain the causes of that event in terms of local, regional, and global changes/developments/contexts. "Event" is in quotes because I am using the term flexibly. It can refer to an event in a person's life, like Sabriya's decision to participate in a public demonstration against the French in 1925; a historical event, like the establishment of the Arab Socialist Ba'th party in Damascus in 1940; or a more extended development like the Syrian Revolt of 1925-26.

By the time of the test, we will have read Sayyid Qutb's memoir of growing up in pre-WWI Upper Egypt; most of Avi Shlaim's history of global and regional factors in explaining Middle Eastern politics in the 20th century; Idilbi's novel about the Syrian Revolt in 1925; and Sharabi's memoirs of being Palestinian in Lebanon during the heyday of radical Arab nationalism other ideologies of the mid-century. You will also have read a few key primary documents including Herzl's articulation of Zionism, the Balfour Declaration, the D'Arcy Oil Concession, early and later expression of Arab nationalism, and UN Resolution 242.

Try to stick to these sources as you compose your essay. Think of an event and related contextual matters (local, regional, global) that are best met by the sources you have at hand. You are not expected (or encouraged) to do research outside of these sources.