• Offered by Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Classification Advanced
  • Course subject Middle Eastern & Central Asian Studies
  • Areas of interest Arab and Islamic Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Matthew Gray
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Second Semester 2015
    See Future Offerings

This course is designed to acquaint students with some of the more important problems, concepts and ideas related to the process of transformation of the Middle Eastern political economies. While paradigms of sustainable economic growth and equitable distribution of wealth will be among the central concerns of the course, its scope will be much broader, dealing with the fundamental questions of where these societies are headed, by which paths, and with what human consequences.

The course will combine theoretical and comparative approaches to change in the Middle East with the advancement of empirical knowledge concerning individual experiences of the Arab states, Iran, Turkey, and Afghanistan. In discussing what constitutes ‘development’ and how it can be measured, various currents in contemporary discourse about development (or in reaction against development) will be examined, using Western and indigenous perceptions. The course will seek to integrate the themes of globalisation, the emergence of new social movements, crises of rentierism and corporatism, and neo-patriarchy into the narrative of change in the Middle East.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and understand global challenges faced by the world in general and the Middle East in particular.
  2. Familiarize students with the experiences of Middle Eastern states and societies with "development" and encourage them to think about the implications of economic adjustment for communities at mezzo- and micro-level.
  3. Promote and facilitate a reevaluation of the concepts and theories contained within the existing "development" and "modernisation" frameworks.
  4. Introduce students to scholarly criticism of developmentalism, both from within the field of development studies (eg, ‘New Institutionalists', theorists of ‘social capital', etc.), and from outside (Third Worldism, feminism, traditionalists, et al.)
  5. Examine critically the praxis of development based on the Washington Consensus and neo-liberalism.

Other Information

This course is specifically designed not to disadvantage students who live outside Canberra, who need to travel for work during the semester, or who have unpredictable work commitments. Students who will be based outside Canberra for all, or a significant part of, the semester should arrange to have regular email or telephone contact with the course convener, and especially to have a telephone discussion if required on their interpretation of and planning for the major essay.

Indicative Assessment

Major essay (50% of total assessment - assesses LO's one or more of 1-5 depending on which question is undertaken.

Seminar presentation (10% of total assessment - assesses one or more LO's 1-5 depending on which question is undertaken).

Final examination (40% of total assessment - assesses all LO's


The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


One two-hour seminar per week over 13 weeks; about 130 hours workload in total (including seminars, preparation time, work on assessments, and private study and reflection.

Prescribed Texts

There is no prescribed overview text for this course. Readings will be made available to students at the start of the course

The following book provides a solid background reading concerning development in the Middle East:

*A Richards and J Waterbury, A Political Economy of the Middle East: State, Class and Economic Development, Boulder: Westview Press, 1996.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $2604
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2015 $4146
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
3214 20 Jul 2015 07 Aug 2015 31 Aug 2015 30 Oct 2015 In Person N/A

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