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We focus on the deep historical ties between the many and varied cultures, religions, literatures, and languages of the Middle East and South Asia

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My [MESALC]major really expanded my worldview, and the fact that it was an interdisciplinary major gave me the facility to look at any particular topic in multiple ways, which I think is incredibly helpful for actors. There are parts of acting where you have to learn about the history of something, the culture you’re in, and how people communicate. I think it has influenced how I approach my acting work.”   

MESALC Statement on Anti-Racism

MESALC joins President Ryan, Dean Baucom and other UVA departments and programs in most strongly condemning and unequivocally denouncing systematic racism that has been manifested most recently in the heartless and brutal killings of innocent black people. MESALC most vocally rejects all forms of marginalization, biases, harassments, exploitations, and targeted violence nationally and internationally. Our department stands united with our students, staff, colleagues, and community against all forms of racism, inequities, injustices, and brutalities.


Professor Milani Receives 2020 Cavaliers' Distinguished Teaching Professorship Award

We are delighted to share the fantastic news that Professor Farzaneh Milani is the recipient of the 2020 Cavaliers' Distinguished Teaching Professorship Award, UVA's most prestigious award and one of the most coveted awards in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the US. Please follow the link below to read more:

Professor Hanadi Al-Samman's Co-Edited Encyclopedia Receives 2020 Dartmouth Medal

We wanted to share the exciting news that Professor Hanadi Al-Samman’s co-edited Global Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer History took home the prestigious Dartmouth Medal at yesterday's awards ceremony at the American Library Association Midwinter Conference. Informally considered the Best Picture Oscar of the reference industry, the Dartmouth is a highly coveted honor and one that Gale (the Encyclopedia’s publisher) last received in 2001.

Samhita Sunya's Middle Eastern & South Asian Film Series

Samhita Sunya has curated a sidebar of 6 films for this year’s edition of the Virginia Film Festival, co-sponsored by the Institute of the Humanities & Global Cultures and Department of Middle Eastern & South Asian Languages & Cultures. As a continuation from last year’s sidebar, Samhita sought accessible, contemporary films that emphasize the linguistic, geographic, and thematic diversity of filmmaking practices connected to the regions of the Middle East & South Asia.


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