MAAS-611 Knowledge/Power/Politics: Education in MENA
Spring for 2017-2018
This course explores the interplay of knowledge and power in the constitution of educational institutions and policies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), as well as in defining appropriate and desirable forms of knowing. In the course, we will examine a number of key questions related to education in MENA, namely:

How are educational institutions and “legitimate” forms of knowledge shaped by competing and powerful projects – religious, economic, and political?
How did colonial domination and encounters with the West affect education in MENA and what are its enduring effects?
How has the expansion of state-funded public schooling contributed to the processes of state formation and power consolidation in the region? What have been the unintended impacts of these processes?
How have contemporary religious movements in the region influenced education and educational institutions?
How has the current preoccupation with reform in the region directed its lens on education?
How does the region fair from the perspective of international development institutions with respect to educational access and quality?
What are the primary debates, tensions and challenges related educational developments in the region today?

The course begins with an examination of some of the historical forms of teaching and learning and then maps their development to the more contemporary forms of schooling that we find beginning in the 20th century and on a broader scale from the mid 20th century forward. Then it moves to contemporary challenges and conflicts faced by a range of actors engaged in the process of trying to define and redefine “legitimate” knowledge.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None
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