This semester I had the unique opportunity of taking both of Professor Webb’s courses on the Middle East and North Africa. The first, Authoritarianism and Change in the Middle East and North Africa, and the second, Intentional Relations of the Middle East and North Africa.
I sincerely believe that taking these two courses a the same time or in close proximity to one another is hugely beneficial to anyone interested in understanding the region on a deeper level.
I could easily tell you all about the youth bulge or the shifting of regional power following the Iranian nuclear deal. I can discuss the roots of the Tunisian Revolution and why they have been successful in facilitating democratic transition while other states have not. I can talk about the arab-israeli conflict in great depth.
If I have learned anything from this semester it is that there is no one root cause to an issue and nothing can be analyzed from a single issue. Often the issues are transnational and global in cause and their effects can have just as far reaching impacts. Not only did this semester provide me with the opportunity to understand how these states act from a comparative politics standpoint, but also from an international relations standpoint. While they may seem similar in subject both are needed to understand the region as a whole.