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Modern Languages and Cultures

Panorama of Nizwa, Oman

Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies research

With expertise in the cultures and languages and of the Middle East, beyond Arabic, the department is among the leading units of its kind in the country.

The John Rylands Library houses a notable collection of more than 900 Arabic manuscripts on a wide variety of subjects, many being rare and unique, and covering roughly 1,000 years.

Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies at Manchester was successful in a joint bid with Edinburgh and Durham for the national HEFCE-funded Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World.

The University of Manchester boasts a breadth of research achievement spread across more distinct discipline areas than any other UK institution and Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies offers exceptionally wide-ranging opportunities for research and advanced training in the history, languages, religious traditions and politics of the Middle East.

Staff research interests include modern Islamic thought, the role of women in the Muslim world, translation studies, Israeli culture, modern Jewish thought, 20th century relations between Europe and the Arab Middle East, alongside classical Islamic history, Shiism, rabbinic Judaism, Turkic linguistics and the pre-Islamic and Christian history of the Middle East.

Some of Manchester's experts in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies contribute to the public debate on contemporary cultural-religious issues in the UK, or are part of the Middle Eastern discourses on the preservation of national heritages, gender roles or the relations between East and West.

Manchester is also the editorial home of the internationally renowned academic periodical Journal of Semitic Studies, which recently celebrated its fiftieth anniversary.

Hear from our academics

Watch the video below to find out more about Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies at Manchester from our academics.