Petition for Samer Shehata

Friend of the blog Ebie Dupont has alerted to me to the surprising denial of tenure of Samer Shehata at Georgetown's Center for Contemporary Arab Studies. Samer, whom I have known for years, is a leading expert on Egypt and the author of a very well received book on labor politics in Egypt as well as the editor of an volume on contemporary Islamist movements in the region. Samer has my solidarity. Ebie writes:

I wanted to draw your readers' attention to a surprising and upsetting development in the world of Middle East academia. Friend of The Arabist Samer Shehata---the frequently-cited Georgetown scholar---was recently and inexplicably denied tenure by Georgetown University. Samer has been a key faculty member of the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies which is part Georgetown's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service for over a decade, and his important work on contemporary Egyptian politics and the Muslim Brotherhood is more relevant now than ever. The politics/rationale behind Georgetown's decision are disheartening, to say the least. Samer's students and friends (mostly former graduates of the Center's Arab Studies Program) have opened a petition in the hopes of getting the university to acknowledge and hopefully reconsider this wrongheaded development. I hope that readers of The Arabist who are graduates of the Center/Georgetown and who appreciate Samer's work will sign the petition.

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Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region,