Farah Talks to Lithuanian Students About Revolution, Education

Mounir Farah, professor of curriculum and instruction, speaks last month with students at Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania.
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Mounir Farah, professor of curriculum and instruction, speaks last month with students at Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania.

Mounir Farah, University of Arkansas professor of curriculum and instruction in the College of Education and Health Profession and of Middle East studies at the King Fahd Center for Middle East and Islamic Studies, recently returned from a visit to Lithuania, where he lectured and led discussions on the structure of American education and on current developments in the Middle East and North Africa.

Farah spoke about the Arab Spring, the term being applied to the revolutionary wave of demonstrations and protests occurring in the Arab world that began late last year. He discussed the reasons behind this wave and explained the differences between what has been happening in Egypt, Libya, Yemen and Syria.

"Each has its own circumstances and, consequently, one should not draw conclusions about one country based on what happened in the other countries," he said. 

In education, Farah traced the development of public education from the time of Horace Mann to the present. He talked about the valuable contributions of public education to American life and democracy and about the challenges that it faces at present. He answered questions about curriculum standards, accreditation process, the role of local, state and federal governments in education, and about funding schools.

Farah is the author and co-author of numerous books, articles and chapters in world history, economics, Middle Eastern studies and education texts and general editor of a four-volume series of biographies in world history.

Farah's work as an educational consultant has taken him to many Middle Eastern countries since 1993. His October trip to Lithuania centered on Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania's main research university. While there, he also participated in the deliberation over a doctoral dissertation by a Turkish diplomat on Turkey’s relationship with the European Union and NATO.

On this trip, Farah was accompanied by his daughter, Teresa Farah, who gave an intensive course on international contracts at the Vytautas Magnus University law school. She is an adjunct professor of law at the University of Arkansas.

"Vytautas Magnus University has a collaborative program with our law school, and we are working on extending the collaboration to our curriculum and instruction in the College of Education and Health Professions and Middle East Studies," Mounir Farah said. "The dean of their law school, Julija Kirsiene, visited Fayetteville last week, and spoke at our law school. She also met with faculty members and administrators of our college, the Graduate School and Middle East studies."

Contacts

Heidi Wells, director of communications
College of Education and Health Professions
479-575-3138, heidisw@uark.edu

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