Middle East and Islamic Studies (MEIS) is a multidisciplinary minor designed to provide a broad understanding of the cultures, history, politics, and economies of the Middle East and Islamic societies, very broadly defined. The emphasis of the minor is on the complexity and diversity of these societies as well as some of the connections between them. The program includes study of the Middle East from the founding of Islam in the seventh century to the present, as well as those cultures and areas in Asia, Africa, and elsewhere that are associated with the historical and current spread of Islam.

This minor was created in 2007 with the support of then-deans Joel Kassiola and Paul Sherwin. The goal of MEIS is to encourages student to evaluate common perceptions and misperceptions of the Middle East and Muslim societies, and to develop an appreciation for the complexity of the region, and its cultures, peoples, histories, and politics. As we keep reading about the Middle East in the news, the minor helps to shed light on what led us to these current events.

The MEIS minor is useful for students planning careers in politics and government, business, education, international organizations, journalism, and art, as well as for those who desire a better understanding of the Middle East, Islamic societies, and Muslim cultures.





Faculty News

The MEIS faculty group extends a warm welcome to our new colleague Persis Karim, who joins us from San Jose State University to lead the newly established Iranian Diaspora Studies Center, located in HUM 503.  We are excited to have Prof. Karim on our campus and look forward to future collaborations.

Kudos to:

  • Evren Savci who was offered a job at Yale University's Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program (WGSS) and will move to the East Coast this summer.  Evren is a tremendous scholar and teacher and will be greatly missed at SF State!!  We wish her much success on this exciting new step of her academic career!  Tebriklerle!!!
  • Lucia Volk, who is the recipient of the Middle East Studies Association's 2017 Undergraduate Teaching Award, given to recognize excellence in the craft of teaching undergraduate Middle East Studies. The award was presented at the 2017 MESA Conference in Washington, DC.
  • Alisar Mustafa, who is this year's recipient of the MEIS Student Excellence award in honor of her outstanding performance in her MEIS classes, as well as her efforts to raise awareness about the Syrian refugee crisis by organizing campus events as well as a special course on the topic through the Experimental College.