POSTPONED: Dr. Michael Barry, The Middle East, Glory to Agony 1498-2003: Part One

July 2, 2020, 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Redwood Library and Athenæum

This lecture has been postponed to a later date.


The Redwood is pleased to welcome back Dr. Michael Barry as he reflects on the history of the Middle East in a four-part lecture series, from the late 1400s to present day. A recognized scholar in Middle Eastern languages and art, Dr. Barry also served as an international humanitarian coordinator in Afghanistan and Pakistan in the 1980s and 1990s, and after many years teaching in Princeton’s Department of Near Eastern Studies, is now head professor at the American University of Afghanistan in Kabul.


Lecture One: Setting the Stage, 1498-1798

The opening lecture addresses how the Western European maritime powers, the Portuguese followed by the Dutch, the French and the English, captured the world’s sea-lanes by successfully circumnavigating the traditional Islamic empires–Mamlûk Egypt, Ottoman Turkey, Safavid Iran and Mughal India–themselves falling from their late medieval pinnacle of cultural glory, and increasingly wracked by multiplying sectarian tensions, while growing Russian continental power also began relentlessly pressing upon the region from the north.

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