Middle East scholar brings international prestige to NU-Q media programs

Khaled Hroub to join Northwestern University in Qatar faculty

Doha, Qatar – June 6, 2012 –  One of the world’s best-known experts on the history, politics, and media of the Middle East, Dr. Khaled Hroub of the University of Cambridge, will join the faculty of Northwestern University in Qatar later this year.

Dr. Hroub, who directs the respected Cambridge Arab Media Programme, is a renowned scholar and leading author. He will teach courses in Middle Eastern studies and conduct research on Arab media and other topics as part of the university’s soon-to-be-announced research group.

Dr. Hroub’s appointment, the first of a series of new faculty to be named this summer, “will add significantly to our already growing program on Arab media and culture,” said Dr. Everette E. Dennis, dean and CEO of NU-Q. “He is an intellectual leader with great range and quality who has written histories, works on contemporary politics, and even literature and poetry. On top of that he is a widely read essayist, newspaper columnist, and has even been a television presenter.”

Having written books in both English and Arabic, Dr. Hroub’s fluency in both languages is “a boom to NU-Q’s Arabic language initiative,” said the dean. “His joining us here will have enormous benefits to our students and faculty, and will strengthen our ties to both our home campus in the U.S. and other schools in Education City.”

Hroub is recognized internationally for his research on contemporary history and politics of the Middle East and has been published widely in both English and Arabic.  As a leading expert on Hamas, Islamic movements, and the politics of identity, some of his most well-known books –Hamas: A Beginner’s Guide, Political Islam: Context Versus Ideology, and Hamas: Political Thought and Practice – offer Western audiences important insights on the political organization that has been the subject of intense discussion and controversy.

In addition, Hroub is known for pioneering critical research into the evolving role of media in the Middle East.  His most recent contributions to the field center on religious broadcasting in the Arab world and the use of media in the Arab Spring revolutions.

In addition, the dean went on to explain, Hroub’s fluency in Arabic –he has published a number of political and literary writings in his native language –has implications for NU-Q’s Arabic language initiative.

An authority on media and politics in the Middle East

As director of the Cambridge Arab Media Programme, Hroub leads an international dialogue on the latest research in Arab media, convening top media experts, academics and industry practitioners each year to explore topics such as religious broadcasting in the Middle East, the media and political change in the Arab world, Arab and Western media coverage of the Iraq war and Arab satellite broadcasting in the age of globalization. He will continue a relationship with the program, which may involve collaboration with NU-Q.

Hroub has also paid close attention to developments in media in the Gulf region, describing it as “without a doubt the hub of Arab media.”  This observation, along with his academic interest in the regional role that Al Jazeera has played during its 15 years of broadcasting, are part of what draws him to Qatar now.

Another major motivation for joining Northwestern’s faculty in Qatar “is the attraction of becoming part of an international leading academic institution branching out in an astonishingly emerging leading country, Qatar,” he said in a recent interview. “Both the university and the country offer great models in leadership that make me happy to make this move at this particular time.”

His 11 published books, in English and Arabic, include two in 2012: In Praise of Revolution and Religious Broadcasting in the Arab World. A monograph, Media in the Arab World: From Nation Building to Revolution Building was also published this year.

Other works by Hroub are Fragility of Ideology, Might of Politics, Tattoo of Cities, and the Enchantress of Poetry, a book of poems in Arabic. He is currently writing a book on a Critique of the Arab Renaissance Project.

Popular voice in Arab, international media

Hroub also makes regular contributions in Arab and world media.  He is the columnist of a syndicated weekly article that appears in six Arabic daily newspapers published in Jordan, the UAE, Oman, Palestine, and Mauritania, as well as in Qatar.  A bi-monthly article that Hroub authors also appears in the London-based Al-Hayat daily.

He has also published articles in the Daily Star, International Herald Tribune, El Pais and La Razon, among others, and previously served as broadcaster and presenter of a weekly book-review program on Al Jazeera until 2006. From 1992-1994, Hroub served as the London-based correspondent for newspapers in Jordan and the UAE.

Hroub holds a Ph.D. in international studies from the University of Cambridge, a Master of Philosophy in international studies, also from Cambridge, as well as an MA from the University of Kent in international relations theory and an MA from the University of Jordan in demography studies.  His B.Sc., also from Jordan University, is in civil engineering.