Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

The Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (MELC) major is the study of the languages, literature, history, and cultures of the Middle East from antiquity to modern times. MELC offers language programs in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, and Turkish, and in the ancient languages of Egyptian, Sumerian, Akkadian, and Aramaic. Students can explore the interconnected worlds of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, and their neighbors, as well as the modern literature and diverse cultures of the modern Middle East. The major also offers study in pre-modern and modern Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions. The department offers students the opportunity to participate in a discovery experience that is innovative, collaborative, transdisciplinary, and features digital research.

The major in Middle Eastern Language and Cultures offers two specializations: 1) Languages and Literature and 2) Middle Eastern Worlds. Students in the Languages and Literature specialization can pursue a major in the modern languages of:

  • Arabic
  • Hebrew
  • Persian 

The Middle Eastern Worlds' specialization is the study of the material, intellectual, and religious histories and cultures of the region from ancient to modern times. Students can pursue a major in:

  • Ancient Middle Eastern Worlds
  • Modern Middle Eastern Worlds

Students can focus on a specific region, time period, language, art, and culture of the Middle East. The areas of study featured in the MELC department include: 

1) Ancient Middle Eastern societies & languages, including ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia.

2) Modern Middle Eastern societies and languages including Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, and Turkish (minor only). 

Declaring the Major

Students are recommended to declare the major early in their academic careers. MELC 10 and MELC 11 are required lower-division courses, which may be taken after declaring the major. Students should consult with the undergraduate student advisor regarding major requirements, transfer credits, study abroad plans, and the opportunity to combine two disciplines through a double major study.  

Honors Program

Students in any of the Middle Eastern Language and Cultures majors, with an overall grade point average (GPA) of 3.3 or higher and a GPA of 3.51 or higher in courses completed in the major, may apply for admission to the honors program in their senior year. Students must maintain the required GPA in the major in order to remain eligible for the honors program. 

In addition to the GPA requirement, students must submit an honors thesis of at least 20 double-spaced, typewritten pages in their senior year. Students are required to enroll in an Independent Study course (MELC 199) in the fall semester and the honors course in (MELC H195) in the spring semester of their senior year in order to receive credit for the thesis. The honors thesis must be read and evaluated by a two-member committee consisting of a department faculty thesis supervisor and another member of the faculty. The thesis must be deemed to be at least B+ quality in order to qualify the candidate for graduation with a degree of honors. Students may receive distinctions of "high honors" or "highest honors" for outstanding thesis papers. 

Minor Programs

In addition to the major program, the department offers a minor in Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (MELC), as well as minors in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, and Turkish.

Minors Offered by the Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (MELC)

Arabic (Minor)
Hebrew (Minor)
Persian (Minor)
Turkish (Minor)

Visit Department Website

Major Requirements

The Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (MELC) major offers concentrations in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Ancient Middle Eastern Worlds, and Modern Middle Eastern Worlds. Students are encouraged to begin the study of a language early in their academic studies. MELC 10 (Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia) and MELC 11 ( The Modern Middle Eastern Worlds) are required courses for the major. 

General Guidelines

  1. All courses taken to satisfy major requirements must be taken for a letter grade and be at least 3 units.
  2. Students pursuing a double major may overlap two courses to meet both major requirements. Students can also overlap one course to satisfy a major and minor requirement.  
  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 is required to declare the major and must be maintained in both lower and upper-division courses used to satisfy major requirements. 
  4. With the prior consent of the faculty major advisor, students may take courses across various disciplines to satisfy the culture and history course requirements for the major. 

Arabic Emphasis

Lower Division Major Requirements8
Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia [4]
Middle Eastern Worlds: The Modern Middle East [4]
Lower Division Language Requirement20
Elementary Arabic [5]
Elementary Arabic [5]
Intermediate Arabic [5]
Intermediate Arabic [5]
Students may be able to satisfy the lower division requirements by completing Arabic 10 (satisfies Arabic 1A and 1B) and Arabic 30 (satisfies Arabic 20A and 20B) courses offered during the summer term or through study abroad programs.
Upper Division Requirements6
Advanced Arabic [3]
Advanced Arabic [3]
Arabic Literature Courses9
Select three of the following:
Modern Arabic Prose [3]
Classical Arabic Prose [3]
Modern Arabic Poetry [3]
Classical Arabic Poetry [3]
Arabic Historical and Geographical Texts [3]
Islamic Religious and Philosophical Texts in Arabic [3]
Survey of Arabic Literature (in Arabic) [3]
Survey of Arabic Literature (in Arabic) [3]
**Only one colloquial course can be used to satisfy this requirement
Colloquial Arabic [4]
Colloquial Arabic [4]
Arabic Culture and History Courses6-8
Select two courses:
Students may select two courses from the MELC Worlds majors course list (see below). Students may also select courses from other departments. All courses for the major must be approved by the faculty major advisor.
Total Units49-51

Hebrew Emphasis

Lower Division Major Requirements8
Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia [4]
Middle Eastern Worlds: The Modern Middle East [4]
Lower Division Language Requirements20
Elementary Hebrew [5]
Elementary Hebrew [5]
Intermediate Hebrew [5]
Intermediate Hebrew [5]
Upper Division Requirements6
Advanced Hebrew [3]
Advanced Hebrew [3]
Hebrew Literature Courses9
Select three of the following:
Modern Hebrew Literature and Culture [3]
Modern Hebrew Literature and Culture [3]
The Structure of Modern Hebrew [3]
The Structure of Modern Hebrew [3]
Elementary Biblical Hebrew [3]
Elementary Biblical Hebrew [3]
Biblical Hebrew Texts [3]
Biblical Hebrew Texts [3]
Hebrew Culture and History Courses6-8
Select two courses:
Students may select two courses from the MELC Worlds majors course list (see below). Students may also select courses from other departments. All courses for the major must be approved by the faculty major advisor.
Total Units49-51

Persian Emphasis 

Lower Division Major Requirements8
Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia [4]
Middle Eastern Worlds: The Modern Middle East [4]
Lower Division Language Requirements20
Select either the Elementary or Heritage Speaking Series
Elementary Modern Persian [5]
Elementary Modern Persian [5]
Reading and Composition for Persian Speaking Students
and Reading and Composition for Persian-Speaking Students
Intermediate Modern Persian [5]
Intermediate Modern Persian [5]
Upper Division Requirements6
Advanced Persian [3]
Advanced Persian [3]
Persian Literature Courses9
Select three courses from the following:
Readings in Classical Persian Prose [3]
Readings in Classical Persian Prose [3]
Classical Persian Poetry [3]
Classical Persian Poetry [3]
Contemporary Persian Literature [3]
Contemporary Persian Literature [3]
Modern Analytical Prose in Persian [3]
Persian Culture and History Courses6-8
Select two courses:
Students may select two courses from the MELC Worlds majors course list (see below). Students may also select courses from other departments. All courses for the major must be approved by the faculty major advisor.
Total Units49-51

Ancient Middle Eastern Worlds 

Lower Division Major Requirements8
Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia [4]
Middle Eastern Worlds: The Modern Middle East [4]
Upper-Division Requirements24-32
The major requires 7 upper-division courses. Students may choose to take two ancient upper-division language courses to count towards the 7 required courses for the major.
Elementary Akkadian [4] (Ancient Middle Eastern Languages)
Elementary Akkadian [4]
Selected Readings in Akkadian [4]
Selected Readings in Akkadian [4]
Elementary Sumerian [4]
Elementary Sumerian [4]
Selected Readings in Sumerian [3]
Selected Readings in Sumerian [3]
Elementary Hittite [4]
Elementary Hittite [4]
Introduction to Egyptian Hieroglyphs [4]
Introduction to Egyptian Hieroglyphs [4]
Intermediate Egyptian [3]
Intermediate Egyptian [3]
Elementary Biblical Hebrew [3]
Elementary Biblical Hebrew [3]
Biblical Hebrew Texts [3]
Biblical Hebrew Texts [3]
Aramaic [3]
Aramaic [3]
Upper-Division Content Courses
Students may select courses from the list below or from other departments. All courses for the major must be approved by the faculty major advisor.
Introduction to Ancient Egypt [4] 1
Women and Gender in Ancient Egypt [4]
Egyptomania [4]
Religion of Ancient Egypt [3]
Babylonian Religion [3]
Ancient Mesopotamian Literature [3]
Ancient Astronomy [4]
Mesopotamian History [3]
Digital Humanities and Egyptology [4]
Survey of Ancient Egyptian History [4]
Gilgamesh: King, Hero, and God [4]
Beyond Wikipedia: The Ancient Middle East [3]
Early Egypt: From Village to Pyramid [4]
Ancient Egypt: Power, Glory and Empire in the Second Millennium [4]
The Art of Ancient Mesopotamia: 3500-1000 BCE [4]
The Art of Ancient Mesopotamia: 1000-330 BCE [4]
Topics in Islamic Art [4]
Iranian Archaeology [4]
Archaeology of Mesopotamia [4]
Archaeology of the Levant [4]
Silk Road Art and Archaeology [3]
Art and Archaeology of Ancient Syria [4]
Art and Archaeology of Ancient Turkey [4]
Arts of Iran and Central Asia [4]
Aspects of Biblical Religion [4]
Biblical Poetry [4]
Topics in History and Cultures of Israel [4]
Literature and History in the Hebrew Bible [4]
History and Historiography in the Hebrew Bible [3]
The Hero in the Bible and the Ancient Middle East [3]
Sociolinguistics of the Middle East [4]
Religions of Ancient Iran [3]
Topics in Persian Art and Culture [4]
MELC 162A
Course Not Available [4]
History of Persian Literature [4]
Magic, Religion, and Science: The Ancient and Medieval Worlds [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Ancient Middle Eastern Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Egyptian Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Iranian/Persian [4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Ancient Middle Eastern Studies [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Egyptian Studies [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Cuneiform [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Egyptian [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Semitics [2,4]
Middle Eastern Archaeological Field School [6]
Directed Group Study for Upper Division Students [1-4]
Supervised Independent Study and Research [1-4]
(1) MELC 18 may count as an upper-division course for the major.
Total Units32-40

Modern Middle Eastern Worlds 

Lower Division Major Requirements8
Middle Eastern Worlds: Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia [4]
Middle Eastern Worlds: The Modern Middle East [4]
Upper-Division Requirements24-32
The major requires 7 upper-division courses. Students may select two upper-division courses in a modern Middle Eastern language (Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, & others) to count towards the 7 required courses for the major.
Upper-Division Content Courses
Students may select courses from the list below or from other departments. All courses for the major must be approved by the faculty major advisor.
Topics in Islamic Art [4]
Silk Road Art and Archaeology [3]
Arts of Iran and Central Asia [4]
Aspects of Biblical Religion [4]
Biblical Poetry [4]
Topics in History and Cultures of Israel [4]
Literature and History in the Hebrew Bible [4]
History and Historiography in the Hebrew Bible [3]
Modern and Contemporary Jewish Thought [4]
Modern Jewish Literatures [4]
Topics in Islamic Thought and Institutions [3]
Modern and Contemporary Islamic Thought [3]
Shi'ite Islam [3]
Sufism: The Mysticism of Islam [3]
Islam [4]
The Rise of Islamic Civilization [4]
Emergence of the Modern Middle East [4]
The Modern Middle East from WWI to the Present [4]
Arabic Literature in Translation [3]
Arabic Literature in Translation [3]
Middle Eastern Women Writers [4]
Cultural Encounters in Modern Arabic Literature [3]
Synagogues, Cathedrals, and Mosques: The Rise and Fall of Islamic Spain [4]
Narratives of Identity in Israeli and Palestinian Fiction [4]
Wonder and the Fantastic: The Thousand and One Nights in World Literary Imagination [3]
Sociolinguistics of the Middle East [4]
Middle East: Post-Colonialism, Migration, and Diaspora [4]
Middle East, Empire, and Orientalism [4]
Topics in Persian Art and Culture [4]
MELC 162A
Course Not Available [4]
History of Persian Literature [4]
Film and Fiction of Iran [4]
Islamic History and Historiography (600-1050) [3]
MELC 170A
Course Not Available [3]
Turkish Literature in Translation [3]
Topics in the History of Central Asia and the Turks [3]
Law and Society in the Early Modern Middle East [3]
History and Culture of Afghanistan [3]
The Quran and Its Interpretation [4]
Magic, Religion, and Science: The Ancient and Medieval Worlds [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Jewish Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Islamic Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Arabic [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Hebrew [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Iranian/Persian [4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Jewish Studies [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Islamic Studies [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Arabic [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Hebrew [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Iranian/Persian [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Turkish [2,4]
Middle Eastern Archaeological Field School [6]
Directed Group Study for Upper Division Students [1-4]
Supervised Independent Study and Research [1-4]
Total Units32-40

Minor Requirements

The Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (MELC) minor program requires five upper-division courses in the literature, language, culture, or history of the Middle East from ancient to modern times. Students can take two upper-division courses in one of the modern languages of the Middle East, such as Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, among others, or from the ancient languages such as Egyptian, Cuneiform, and Semitics. Students can also take courses related to the Middle East from other departments. All courses for the minor must be approved by the faculty major advisor. 

General Guidelines

  1. All minors must be declared no later than one semester before a student's Expected Graduation Term (EGT). If the semester before EGT is fall or spring, the deadline is the last day of RRR week. If the semester before EGT is summer, the deadline is the final Friday of Summer Sessions. To declare a minor, contact the department advisor for information on requirements, and the declaration process.
  2. All courses taken to satisfy the minor requirement must be taken for a letter grade and be at least 3 units.

  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 must be maintained in order to declare and complete the minor. 

  4. No more than one upper-division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor program.
  5. With the prior consent of the faculty major advisor, students may take courses across various disciplines to satisfy the Arabic culture and history requirement. 

Minor Requirements

Upper-Division Requirements (5 Courses)15-20
Select five courses from the list below or relevant courses from other departments. Students may also take up to 2 courses in an ancient or modern language of the Middle East. All courses must be approved by a faculty major adviser.
Introduction to Ancient Egypt [4] 1
Women and Gender in Ancient Egypt [4]
Egyptomania [4]
Religion of Ancient Egypt [3]
Babylonian Religion [3]
Ancient Mesopotamian Literature [3]
Ancient Astronomy [4]
Mesopotamian History [3]
Digital Humanities and Egyptology [4]
Survey of Ancient Egyptian History [4]
Gilgamesh: King, Hero, and God [4]
Beyond Wikipedia: The Ancient Middle East [3]
Early Egypt: From Village to Pyramid [4]
Ancient Egypt: Power, Glory and Empire in the Second Millennium [4]
The Art of Ancient Mesopotamia: 3500-1000 BCE [4]
The Art of Ancient Mesopotamia: 1000-330 BCE [4]
Topics in Islamic Art [4]
Iranian Archaeology [4]
Archaeology of Mesopotamia [4]
Archaeology of the Levant [4]
Silk Road Art and Archaeology [3]
Art and Archaeology of Ancient Syria [4]
Art and Archaeology of Ancient Turkey [4]
Arts of Iran and Central Asia [4]
Minoan and Mycenaean Art [4]
History of Ancient Israel [4]
Aspects of Biblical Religion [4]
Biblical Poetry [4]
Topics in History and Cultures of Israel [4]
Literature and History in the Hebrew Bible [4]
History and Historiography in the Hebrew Bible [3]
Modern and Contemporary Jewish Thought [4]
The Hero in the Bible and the Ancient Middle East [3]
Modern Jewish Literatures [4]
Topics in Islamic Thought and Institutions [3]
Modern and Contemporary Islamic Thought [3]
Shi'ite Islam [3]
Sufism: The Mysticism of Islam [3]
Islam [4]
The Rise of Islamic Civilization [4]
Emergence of the Modern Middle East [4]
The Modern Middle East from WWI to the Present [4]
Arabic Literature in Translation [3]
Arabic Literature in Translation [3]
Middle Eastern Women Writers [4]
Cultural Encounters in Modern Arabic Literature [3]
Synagogues, Cathedrals, and Mosques: The Rise and Fall of Islamic Spain [4]
Narratives of Identity in Israeli and Palestinian Fiction [4]
Wonder and the Fantastic: The Thousand and One Nights in World Literary Imagination [3]
Sociolinguistics of the Middle East [4]
Middle East: Post-Colonialism, Migration, and Diaspora [4]
Middle East, Empire, and Orientalism [4]
Religions of Ancient Iran [3]
Topics in Persian Art and Culture [4]
MELC 162A
Course Not Available [4]
History of Persian Literature [4]
Film and Fiction of Iran [4]
Islamic History and Historiography (600-1050) [3]
MELC 170A
Course Not Available [3]
Turkish Literature in Translation [3]
Topics in the History of Central Asia and the Turks [3]
Law and Society in the Early Modern Middle East [3]
History and Culture of Afghanistan [3]
The Quran and Its Interpretation [4]
Magic, Religion, and Science: The Ancient and Medieval Worlds [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Ancient Middle Eastern Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Egyptian Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Jewish Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Islamic Studies [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Arabic [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Hebrew [4]
Special Topics in Fields of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures: Iranian/Persian [4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Ancient Middle Eastern Studies [2,4]
Undergrad Seminar: Problems and Research in Middle Eastern Studies: Arabic [2,4]
Middle Eastern Archaeological Field School [6]
Directed Group Study for Upper Division Students [1-4]
Supervised Independent Study and Research [1-4]
1) MELC 18 may count as an upper division course for the major or minor.
Total Units15-20
 
 

College Requirements

Undergraduate students must fulfill the following requirements in addition to those required by their major program.

For detailed lists of courses that fulfill college requirements, please review the College of Letters & Sciences page in this Guide. For College advising appointments, please visit the L&S Advising Pages. 

University of California Requirements

Entry Level Writing

All students who will enter the University of California as freshmen must demonstrate their command of the English language by fulfilling the Entry Level Writing requirement. Fulfillment of this requirement is also a prerequisite to enrollment in all reading and composition courses at UC Berkeley. 

American History and American Institutions

The American History and Institutions requirements are based on the principle that a US resident graduated from an American university, should have an understanding of the history and governmental institutions of the United States.

Berkeley Campus Requirement

American Cultures

All undergraduate students at Cal need to take and pass this course in order to graduate. The requirement offers an exciting intellectual environment centered on the study of race, ethnicity and culture of the United States. AC courses offer students opportunities to be part of research-led, highly accomplished teaching environments, grappling with the complexity of American Culture.

College of Letters & Science Essential Skills Requirements

Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning requirement is designed to ensure that students graduate with basic understanding and competency in math, statistics, or computer science. The requirement may be satisfied by exam or by taking an approved course.

Foreign Language

The Foreign Language requirement may be satisfied by demonstrating proficiency in reading comprehension, writing, and conversation in a foreign language equivalent to the second semester college level, either by passing an exam or by completing approved course work.

Reading and Composition

In order to provide a solid foundation in reading, writing, and critical thinking the College requires two semesters of lower division work in composition in sequence. Students must complete parts A & B reading and composition courses by the end of their second semester and a second-level course by the end of their fourth semester.

College of Letters & Science 7 Course Breadth Requirements

Breadth Requirements

The undergraduate breadth requirements provide Berkeley students with a rich and varied educational experience outside of their major program. As the foundation of a liberal arts education, breadth courses give students a view into the intellectual life of the University while introducing them to a multitude of perspectives and approaches to research and scholarship. Engaging students in new disciplines and with peers from other majors, the breadth experience strengthens interdisciplinary connections and context that prepares Berkeley graduates to understand and solve the complex issues of their day.

Unit Requirements

  • 120 total units

  • Of the 120 units, 36 must be upper division units

  • Of the 36 upper division units, 6 must be taken in courses offered outside your major department
Residence Requirements

For units to be considered in "residence," you must be registered in courses on the Berkeley campus as a student in the College of Letters & Science. Most students automatically fulfill the residence requirement by attending classes here for four years. In general, there is no need to be concerned about this requirement, unless you go abroad for a semester or year or want to take courses at another institution or through UC Extension during your senior year. In these cases, you should make an appointment to meet an adviser to determine how you can meet the Senior Residence Requirement.

Note: Courses taken through UC Extension do not count toward residence.

Senior Residence Requirement

After you become a senior (with 90 semester units earned toward your BA degree), you must complete at least 24 of the remaining 30 units in residence in at least two semesters. To count as residence, a semester must consist of at least 6 passed units. Intercampus Visitor, EAP, and UC Berkeley-Washington Program (UCDC) units are excluded.

You may use a Berkeley Summer Session to satisfy one semester of the Senior Residence requirement, provided that you successfully complete 6 units of course work in the Summer Session and that you have been enrolled previously in the college.

Modified Senior Residence Requirement

Participants in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP), Berkeley Summer Abroad, or the UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) may meet a Modified Senior Residence requirement by completing 24 (excluding EAP) of their final 60 semester units in residence. At least 12 of these 24 units must be completed after you have completed 90 units.

Upper Division Residence Requirement

You must complete in residence a minimum of 18 units of upper division courses (excluding UCEAP units), 12 of which must satisfy the requirements for your major.

Student Learning Goals

Learning Goals for the Major

  1. Proficiency in speaking, listening, and writing in the designated language.
  2. Knowledge of the major literary genres and corpora relevant to the designated language.
  3. Knowledge of the main historical and cultural periods and geographies relevant to the designated language.
  4. Familiarity with the entire area of the Middle East from ancient to modern times.
  5. Awareness of the importance of the Middle East in today’s global society.
  6. The ability to formulate a well-organized argument supported by evidence.
  7. The ability to critically read and analyze scholarship in the field.
  8. The ability to write and to communicate orally.

Courses

Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures

Faculty and Instructors

Faculty

Azza Ahmad, Assistant Adjunct Professor. Arabic Languages, CMES.

Wali Ahmadi, Associate Professor. Persian languages, Persian literature.
Research Profile

Asad Ahmed, Associate Professor. Islam (social and intellectual history).
Research Profile

Adam Benkato, Professor. Iranian Studies, Senior Research Scholar at CMES.

Simon Brelaud, Assistant Adjunct Professor. Assyrian Studies, Syriac Language.

Ahmad Diab, Assistant Professor. Modern Arabic Literature.
Research Profile

Chana Kronfeld, Professor. Comparative literature, modernism, Hebrew, Yiddish, modern poetry, minor literatures, politics of literary history, feminist stylistics, intertextuality, translation studies.
Research Profile

Margaret Larkin, Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures. Classical Arabic Literature.
Research Profile

Rita Lucarelli, Associate Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, Egyptology.
Research Profile

Maria Mavroudi, Professor. History, Byzantine studies.
Research Profile

Nasser Meerkhan, Assistant Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, and Spanish and Portuguese.

Benjamin Porter, Associate Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, Archaeology, Near Eastern archaeology, Middle East, Arid Environments, anthropology, Heritage, tourism, and Museum Studies.
Research Profile

Carol A. Redmount, Associate Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, Egyptology.
Research Profile

Francesca Rochberg, Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, history of science, ancient near east, cuneiform studies.
Research Profile

Niek Veldhuis, Professor. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, digital humanities, intellectual history, Sumerian, cuneiform.
Research Profile

Lecturers

Rutie Adler, Lecturer.

Hatem A. Bazian, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.
Research Profile

Elsa Elmahdy, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, Arabic Language Coordinator.

Gholam-Reza Ghahramani, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

John L. Hayes, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

Sanjyot Mehendale, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, Central Asia, Central Asian studies, archaeology and art history.
Research Profile

Haitham S. Mohamed, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

Laurie Pearce, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

Barbara Richter, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

Jason Christopher Vivrette, Lecturer. Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures.

Emeritus Faculty

Ayla Algar, Lecturer Emeritus. Turkish language and literature, language pedagogy.

Hamid Algar, Professor Emeritus.

Robert B. Alter, Professor Emeritus. Comparative literature, Near Eastern studies, 19th-century European and American novel, modernism, literary aspects of the bible, modern and biblical Hebrew literature.
Research Profile

Guitty Azarpay, Professor Emeritus. Art and archaeology of the ancient Near East and Central Asia.
Research Profile

Ariel A. Bloch, Professor Emeritus.

Chava Boyarin, Professor Emeritus.

Daniel Boyarin, Professor Emeritus. Talmud, rhetoric, Christianity, genealogy of, invention of Judaism.
Research Profile

Wolfgang J. Heimpel, Professor Emeritus. Near Eastern studies.
Research Profile

Ronald Hendel, Professor Emeritus. Textual criticism, Hebrew bible, ancient Near Eastern religion and mythology, Northwest Semitic linguistics.
Research Profile

Anne D. Kilmer, Professor Emeritus.

David Larkin, Lecturer Emeritus. Egyptology.

James T. Monroe, Professor Emeritus.

Jaleh Pirnazar, Lecturer Emeritus. Modern Iranian history Persian language and literature, Iranian Cinema.

Martin Schwartz, Professor Emeritus. Near Eastern studies.
Research Profile

Muhammad Siddiq, Professor Emeritus. Near Eastern studies.
Research Profile

David B. Stronach, Professor Emeritus.

Contact Information

Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures

250 Social Sciences Building

Phone: 510-642-3757

Fax: 510-643-8430

nes@berkeley.edu

Visit Department Website

Department Chair & Faculty Adviser Middle Eastern Modern Worlds

Wali Ahmadi

284 Social Sciences Bldg.

ahmadi@berkeley.edu

Faculty Advisor for Middle Eastern Ancient Worlds

Benjamin Porter

266 Social Sciences Bldg.

bwporter@berkeley.edu

Undergraduate Major Advisor

Rania Shah, MA

250 Social Sciences Bldg.

Phone: 510-642-3758

rania.shah@berkeley.edu

Back to Top