Georgetown University's Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) recently announced the appointment of Fida Adely as the first holder of the Clovis and Hala Salaam Maksoud Chair in Arab Studies. Starting this fall, Adely will teach courses on development, gender and education in the Arab world as part of the Master of Arts in Arab Studies program.
"The Maksoud Chair is an important resource for both the Center and University as a whole," said Robert Gallucci, dean of the School of Foreign Service. "Professor Adely's expertise on the social and economic development of the Arab world is a critical addition to our community of scholars."
The Maksoud Chair was established by CCAS in honor of Ambassador Clovis Maksoud and his late wife Hala Salaam Maksoud to strengthen research and teaching in the areas of social and economic development in the Arab world. The Maksoud Chair will contribute to research and teaching in the broad area of Arab social and economic development, including issues of education, governance and gender.
"This is a most welcome addition to our capabilities in Arab studies," said Michael Hudson, Saif Ghobash Professor of Arab Studies and director of CCAS. "It gives the opportunity to our faculty and students to confront the myriad challenges facing the Arab societies at these turbulent times."
Fida Adely comes to Georgetown with significant expertise in the field of development and gender in the Arab world. She was the recipient of two Fulbright fellowships to study gender and education in Jordan and her research has examined the role of state schools and contemporary social change. She received her PhD in comparative education and anthropology from Columbia University and her masters at Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs. Her dissertation, "Gender Struggles: Nation, Faith and Development in a Jordanian High School," focused on the schooling experience of adolescent girls in Jordan. In addition to her teaching, Adely will deliver a public lecture at Georgetown for the formal inauguration of the Maksoud Chair in Arab Studies on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2007.
Ambassador Clovis Maksoud is a leading Arab public intellectual who played a key role in the founding of the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies in 1975. Maksoud served as the representative of the League of Arab States to the United Nations for eleven years, and was a senior editor at the Egyptian daily Al-Ahram and editor-in-chief of Beirut's Al-Nahar International weekly. In 1991 he founded the Center for the Global South at American University. Hala Salaam Maksoud, who received a PhD in Government from Georgetown, served as president of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), the largest grassroots Arab American organization in the United States, and was recognized as a role model for Arab and Arab-American woman. A commentator on Middle East affairs and U.S.-Middle East relations, Maksoud was involved in the effort to educate the U.S. public on issues related to the Arab world.The Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, part of Georgetown's School of Foreign Service, is the only academic center in the United States focusing solely on the Arab world. CCAS offers a Master of Arts degree in Arab studies and certificate programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The Center publishes a quarterly newsletter, books, monographs and occasional papers on a variety of Middle East-related topics. The CCAS outreach program assists primary, middle school and secondary school teachers in the development of curriculum relevant to the Middle East, and Center-sponsored lecture series, conferences and annual symposia explore issues of major import to the Arab world, and feature prominent individuals from the areas of government, the business community, academia and the media.
Source: Office of Communications (September 19, 2007)