MESA Banner
Rewriting Histories and Narratives from the Arab Region: Alternative Archives, Marginalized Voices

Special Session IV-1, sponsored byArab Council for Social Studies-MESA, 2023 Annual Meeting

On Friday, November 3 at 11:00 am

Special Session Description
While formal research and knowledge production institutions in the Arab region continue to suffer from a dismal array of constraints and shortcomings, there is an explosion of initiatives interrogating, critiquing and providing alternatives to longstanding narratives of nationalism, identity, political structures and lifeworlds. Mostly organized through para-institutional and interstitial modalities, often ephemeral and short-lived, these initiatives create new archives, highlight marginalized voices and construct alternative narratives and visions of the future. This roundtable will examine issues such as methodological nationalism, revolutionary knowledge, digital activism and domestic archives. The importance of these efforts from the Arab region is in the production of new insights and interpretations of pasts, presents and futures but also as a critique of existing formal institutions of knowledge production in the region.