The Islamic World: Perceptions & Realities

MAS 610

September 11, 2001, obviously changed the world, and one of the ways this is apparent is with the increased interest of Americans in the Islamic world. This course seeks to place the modern Islamic world in an historical context, with an emphasis on how people in the West perceive Islam, as well as how Muslims see themselves. We will begin by tracing the roots of Islam to the era of the prophet Muhammad and charting the rise and fall of the Ottoman Empire, but our primary focus is the contemporary history of several countries within the Islamic realm. We will not focus on Islam as a religion. Themes for the course include the Islamic world’s relations with the West; the differences within Islam as well as within and between Islamic countries; gender relations within the Islamic world; the Arab-Israeli conflict and its significance to the broader Islamic world; and the rise of modern terrorism in the Middle East. We will finish the course by focusing on the Arab-Israeli conflict and its general significance for the Islamic world. Students will come away from the course with an understanding of the historical roots of Islam and of the contemporary Islamic world.

Course Summary: A broad overview of the course content and learning outcomes.

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