- Code MEAS8127
- Unit Value 6 units
- Offered by Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
- ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
- Course subject Middle Eastern & Central Asian Studies
- Areas of interest Arab and Islamic Studies, Anthropology, International Relations, Political Sciences, Sociology
- Academic career PGRD
- Dr Raihan Ismail
- Mode of delivery In Person
First Semester 2021
See Future Offerings
This course focuses on sectarianism in the Middle East. The growing sectarian tension and conflict between Sunni and Shia Muslims has come to define much of the region’s political landscape. The course’s central aim is to examine the complexities of sectarianism in the Middle East. Its scope extends the nature of the theological divisions between the two sects. More significantly, the course analyses Sunni and Shia identity in various countries in the Middle East, and power politics in the region.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- identify and comprehend the history of the sectarian divide in Islam between its Sunni and Shia sects, become familiar with the key theological features of Sunni and Shia Islam and the areas in which the sects diverge doctrinally, and have the foundation for understanding the animosity and conflict between members of the sects, in both historical and contemporary terms;
- understand sectarian identity and politics in various countries in the Middle East;
- understand socio-political development in the Middle East and the sectarian tension and conflict in the region; and
- understand the interconnections between religion and politics in general and how that has shaped the attitudes of various actors in the region.
Indicative AssessmentSeminar Participation - 10% (LO's 1-4)
Essay (4,000 words) - 50% (LO's 1-4)
Final Exam, 3 hours (held during the formal examination period) - 40% (LO's 1-4)
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Workload130 hours of total student learning time made up from:
a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of workshop and workshop-like activities; and
b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing
Preliminary ReadingBrigitte Marechal and Sami Zemni, The Dynamics of Sunni-Shia Relationships: Doctrine, Transnationalism, Intellectuals and the Media, (London, Hurst&Company, 2013).
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