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Juan Cole

Middle East historian Juan Cole, the Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan, will deliver Ohio University's 35th annual Costa Lecture on Monday.

Photo courtesy of: New America Foundation

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Monday’s Costa lecture analyzes democratizing movements of the Middle East


On Monday, Ohio University's Department of History will host the 35th annual Costa Lecture featuring Middle East historian Juan Cole, the Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan. The event, to be held Sept. 17 at 7:30 p.m. in the Baker Center University Theater, is free and open to the public.

This year's lecture focuses on social media and online sources as resources that can help us understand democratizing movements of the Middle East, also known as the Arab Spring.

"The Arab World in the past 18 months has witnessed the toppling of four presidents and even more prime ministers, the outbreak of two civil wars, and massive popular movements spanning the spectrum from the Marxist far left to the Muslim fundamentalist far right, and everything in between," Cole said.

According to Professor of History Mariana Dantas, the event hopes to draw members of the University community and the Athens community.

"As avid consumers of online information, and contributors to social media and other web sites, we can all find something of value in a discussion of the political significance and implications of online
activities," she said.

In addition to his work at University of Michigan, Cole is the author of a blog titled "Informed Consent." He has also authored two books, "Napolean's Egypt" and "Engaging the Muslim World."

The Costa Lecture, started in 1980, is funded by a donation from Ohio University graduate Helen Coast Hayes (1926). Previous speakers include Jay Rubenstein, Gerhard Weinberg and Fred Anderson.