September 21: Leila Fawaz on “A Land of Aching Hearts: The Middle East in the Great War”

World War One was a hugely transformative event in Europe and the Middle East. Fawaz argues, however, that in the Middle Eastern theatres of the war in particular many people did not see this war as a “great” war at the time. Average people were consumed with their own survival; they saw the war through their own local or regional lenses. Yet the profound misery people endured on an individual level has affected broader political views to this day, coloring relationships between east and west and fomenting current political movements. In her telling of the social history, Fawaz brings to life the stories of the many heroes among common people who survived the war in courageous ways.

Leila Fawaz is the Issam M. Fares Professor of Lebanese and Eastern Mediterranean Studies at Tufts University. Fawaz received her PhD in History from Harvard University. Among her publications are An Occasion for War(1994) and A Land of Aching Hearts: the Middle East in the Great War (2014). She is currently researching the changing nature of collective memory and the evolving legacy of World War I in Lebanon and Syria. In 2012 Fawaz was awarded the title of Chevalier in the French National Order of the Legion of Honor.

The seminar meets at 4:00 p.m. at the Woodrow Wilson Center, 6th Floor Moynihan Board Room, Ronald Reagan Building, Federal Triangle Metro Stop.

The seminar is sponsored jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Wilson Center. It meets weekly during the academic year. Seewww.nationalhistorycenter.org for the schedule, speakers, topics, and dates as well as webcasts and podcasts. The seminar thanks the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations and the George Washington University History Department for their support.  Reservations requested because of limited seating.

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