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Summer School – Understanding the Middle East


More details soon!







2020 Edition

“Dis(order) in the Middle East: Space, Power and Politics”

22nd – 27th June 2020 



From 2011 a renewed attention to the political dimension of the space arose. The use of spaces, especially urban spaces, has played a central role in the Middle East: demonstrations, strikes, protests, sit-ins or even confrontations have been constant elements in many Middle Eastern cities. These places have seen the emergence of various forms of resistance, ranging from the cultural and intellectual scenes to the social and political contention. This has resulted in a renewed interest of politics in the management of space, especially in authoritarian contexts where the control over individuals is also part of the control over the space, crucial element to State’s sovereignty and stability.

In the Middle East the political use of spaces/places, has played a crucial role, nowadays as in the colonial past: In the redefinition of borders and the consequent delimitation of territories on which to exercise sovereignty; but also on cities as well as interstitial spaces where the imposition of regulatory plans or a colonial toponymy of places have completely altered space perception and fruition. This resonates with the delimitation (bordering) and consequent use of public spaces and of the public sphere that are continuously redefined and reshaped across the centuries.

The seventh edition of the summer school “Understanding the Middle East” critically unpacks space and politics, exploring the role they have in re-define not just borders, sovereignty and power but also identities, cultural and economic assets.

In short, the objective of the summer school is to offer useful tools of analysis to better understand the complexity of the Middle East and, at the same time, to facilitate explanations away from oversimplifications.



! Note on Coronavirus/Covid-19 ! 

The approach followed by the TOMidEast organising committee is to prioritise and guarantee the safety of all participants and Faculty members. In recognition of the global health situation and persistent health concerns in Italy, the Organising Committee has decided that the 2020 edition of the TOMidEast Summer School will be delivered entirely online on the CISCO Webex platform. The date of the course are unchanged (22 June – 27 June) and the program will reflect as closely as possible the one which has been advertised.

~ Scientific Committee:

Rosita Di Peri, University of Turin (Summer School coordinator); Gilbert Achcar, SOAS, London; Francesco Cavatorta, Laval University, Quebec City; Raymond Hinnebusch, St. Andrews University, St. Andrews; Fadia Kiwan, St. Joseph University, Beirut; Ilter Turan, Bilgi University, Istanbul.

~ TOMidEast Project Officer:

Marcella Re

She can be contacted via email writing to the following address: middleeast.to@gmail.com,              or

by writing to:


c/o Department of Culture, Politics and Society

Lungo Dora Siena 100 

10153 Torino – ITALY

Check out the promotional video of the Summer School:


Enjoy and join us!

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