Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society Organization Logo Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society

Research Project

The Quest for Modern Language Between the Mediterranean and Black Sea, 1820–1948

2021 – 2024
Detail of a 19th century map of the Middle East
Map illustration courtesy Itamar Francez

Key Question

Project Summary

Historians, literary scholars, linguists, anthropologists, and sociologists will come together to examine the role of language ideologies in cultural and political discourses in and around the Middle East in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Research Team

Orit Bashkin

Orit Bashkin

Professor of Modern Middle Eastern History

University of Chicago

Orit Bashkin is a historian who works on the intellectual, social and cultural history of the modern Middle East. She earned her PhD from Princeton University (2004), writing a thesis on Iraqi intellectual history under the supervision of Professors Robert Tignor and Samah Selim, and her BA...

Marilyn Booth

Marilyn Booth

Marilyn Booth

Khalid bin Abdallah Al Saud Professor for the Study of the Contemporary Arab World

University of Oxford

Marilyn Booth's most recent monograph, The Career and Communities of Zaynab Fawwaz: Feminist Thinking in Fin-de-siècle Egypt (2021), is among numerous publications on early feminism and Arabophone women’s writing in Egypt and Ottoman Syria. Initiator of the Ottoman Translation Studies...

Itamar Francez

Itamar Francez

Associate Professor, Department of Linguistics

University of Chicago

Itamar Francez works on semantics, pragmatics, and especially in how lexical, contextual, and pragmatic factors coalesce to bring about complex inferential behaviors. He also works on the role of interpretation in explaining morphological and morpho-syntactic generalizations within and across...

Annie Greene

Annie Greene

Historian

Annie Greene is a historian of intellectual and cultural production in the modern Middle East, particularly the role of language in creating, conveying, and challenging national revival movements. Her published journal articles examine the development of the Iraqi press and civic agency of the...

Na'ama Rokem

Na'ama Rokem

Associate Professor of Modern Hebrew Literature & Comparative Literature

University of Chicago

Na'ama Rokem works on Modern Hebrew and German-Jewish literature. Her first book, Prosaic Conditions: Heinrich Heine and Spaces of Zionist Literature (Northwestern University Press, 2013) argues that prose - as a figure of thought, a mode, and a medium - played an instrumental role in...

Holly Shissler

Holly Shissler

Associate Professor of Ottoman and Modern Turkish History

University of Chicago

A. Holly Shissler received her A.B. in Anthropology from Vassar College and her Ph.D. in History from UCLA. She specializes in the history of the later Ottoman Empire and early years of the Turkish Republic. Her particular interests are Ottoman and Turkish intellectual history, nationalism, and...

Explore

Featured Project

The Language of Kim
Explore

Continue Exploring

Motion and Meaning: Sign and Body Gesture in Dance Narratives Across Cultures
Explore