The Joint Honours degree course in Middle Eastern and Jewish and Islamic Civilisations is taught by academics from the Dept of Near and Middle Eastern Studies and we have specialists in a wide range of areas including: Ancient Near East; modern and medieval Middle East and North Africa; and Jewish and Islamic Civilisations (from antiquity to the present). A friendly, student-oriented and diverse department, we are committed to helping students pursue their intellectual interests and extend their intellectual skills. We aim to support them in achieving their study goals, in the belief that these provide a key foundation for subsequently achieving life goals.
Our students come from many different cultural backgrounds, in Ireland and abroad, and our degree programmes presuppose no prior knowledge.
In the first year, students are introduced to a wide range of areas across the full spectrum of ancient and modern topics. In the following years students shape their own educational experience, by choosing modules in accordance with their own developing interests.
For those who enjoy studying languages, we offer a range of ancient and modern Middle Eastern languages. Those available typically include Arabic, Turkish, Hebrew (modern and ancient), Ottoman Turkish, Akkadian, Sumerian, and Middle Egyptian Hieroglyphs. Language study is optional and begins in year two.
The Joint Honours degree course in Middle Eastern and Jewish and Islamic Civilisations gives students an analytical and well-rounded perspective on this hugely important and fascinating part of the world. Encompassing all aspects of that area – from history, politics and religion to the arts, languages, and international relations – it develops a broad education across the humanities and social sciences. But it also develops students’ cultural dexterity in a way that is important for the increasingly globalised job market, where one needs to be able to network as easily with someone in Dubai or Cairo as with someone in Cork or Donegal. The degree also provides critical skills in research and communication – again, highly valued attributes in the world of work.
The degree course has huge contemporary relevance. We examine issues like human rights, gender, racism, Islamophobia, antisemitism and the place of religion in secular societies and secular life in religious states.