Middle East Scholar to Discuss Tunisia, Morocco After Arab Spring

Jeffrey VanDenBurg is professor of political science and the director of Middle East studies at Drury University.
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Jeffrey VanDenBurg is professor of political science and the director of Middle East studies at Drury University.

The King Fahd Center at the University of Arkansas is pleased to announce “In Through the Out Door: Regionalism and National Politics in Tunisia and Morocco after the Uprisings,” a special guest lecture by Jeffrey VanDenBerg, professor of political science and director of Middle East studies at Drury University. The lecture will take place at 2 p.m. today, Friday, Jan. 23, in the Hembree Auditorium (AFLS107-E), and is free and open to the public.

VanDenBerg has taught at Drury University since 1998. He received his doctorate from the University of Cincinnati. He teaches courses in international relations, foreign policy, and Middle East politics, with research interests focus on Arab politics and international relations in the Middle East. He has conducted research and published work on Jordan and is currently looking at trends in North Africa. VanDenBerg's publications include ‘King Hussein and Black September’ and ‘Generational Leadership Change in the Arab World’ in History in Dispute: The Middle East Since 1945; ‘Teaching and Learning in Middle East Studies’ in Issues in Middle East Studies and ‘Alignment Theory and Interrelated Threats: Jordan and the Persian Gulf Crisis’ (co-author) in Security Studies. He is also a founding member of the Middle East Studies Association’s Committee on Undergraduate Education.

Since December 2010, events in Tunisia have influenced politics across the Arab world. The overthrow of President Ben Ali fueled revolutionary upheaval throughout the Arab world. Amidst the disappointments for a broader Arab Spring, Tunisia remains a positive example – its democratic constitution and free presidential and parliamentary elections provide a model for other Arab states.

Morocco has not been considered an Arab spring state, but the winds of political change have blown in its direction as well. VanDenBerg will investigate the impact of transnational variables and regime strategies on political developments in Morocco and Tunisia since 2011, with a focus on regional and international affairs, in which distinctions between domestic politics and foreign policy are increasingly blurred.

About the King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies

The King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies is an academic and research unit in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. An interdisciplinary and interdepartmental area studies center that offers diverse cultural, intellectual, and educational opportunities for the University of Arkansas community, it promotes research and teaching in interdisciplinary Middle East studies. The center offers an undergraduate major in Middle East Studies and supports graduate studies in related departments through the Middle East Studies Program, as well as summer language study and research assistantships for graduate students and teaching and research by visiting scholars from affiliated universities and programs. More information about the King Fahd Center can be found at http://mest.uark.edu. For ongoing news, follow the Center on Facebook and Twitter.


Nani Verzon, program coordinator
King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies
479-575-2175, hverzon@uark.edu


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