CCNE Accredits AUB's Nursing Programs  
Architecture Building and Science Lab Dedicayed in Name of Kamal Shair
Abu-Haidar Neuroscience Institute Opens
Imad Baalbaki Appointed Assistant Vice President for Development
AUB Establishes Virtual Instrumentation Center
Ziyadeh Appointed Chairman of Internal Medicine
Kibbi Joins ILDS Directors
Faculty Profile: Shadi Najjar
Faculty Profile: Daniel Asmar
Faculty Profile: Karim Nader
Asplante Honors Three AUB Professors
AUB Scientists Hope to Cure Diseases through Stem Cell Therapy
Concerns about Food and Nutrition
CRPH Win Wellcome Trust Grant
AUB Business School Set to Join Rank of Top 6 Percent in the Wolrd
Franklin Scholarship Awarded to 20 Students
Names of First batch of Franklin Scholars
Festival of Thinkers in the UAE
Project Manager Alain Eid Brings His Energy and Success to AUB
Staff Profile: Eleanor Aboussouan
An Urgent Call for Environmental Action
Lebanon's Oil Spill Revisited - 14 Months Later
AUB Hosts Meeting for Reconstruction of the South
Peruvian Diplomat Lectures at AUB
Political Science Lecture Examines Nonviolent Resistance
Iraqi Sociologist Speaks at Sociology Cafe
Learning to Teach: Mellon Summer Seminar 2007
School of Nursing Hosts Lecture on Ethics in Medicine
Volunteers at CCCL Learn about Patient Care
Physician Lectures on the Global Epidemic of Obesity
Award-winning Designer Lectures at AUB
German Architect Lectures on Contemporary Approaches to Landscape Design
JTP Equips Journalists with Survival and Management Skills
Human Rights Week Underscores Humanitarian Concerns
Recently Published
In Memoriam
Laila Baroody Awarded for Outstanding Service
Comic Posters Exhibited
Kulturzentrum Presents Opera Program in Assembly Hall
AUB Spring Concert Enthralls Audience with Early Italian Music
AUB Music Club Sells Out
November 2007 Vol. 9 No. 2

Iraqi Sociologist Speaks at Sociology Cafe

The director of the Iraqi Institute for Strategic Studies, Faleh Abdel Jabbar, discussed the nation and ethnicity in Iraq in the first Sociology Café gathering of the academic year that was held on October 17 at T-Marbouta Café in Hamra.

In the lecture, entitled "Ethnicity, Nationness and Statehood: the Case in Iraq," Abdel Jabbar introduced three schools of thought dealing with the idea of "nationness." The first is the modernist school, which sees nations as the result of modernity, industrialism, free society, science, and culture. The second school of thought says that nations predate industrialism, as they are formed by language and culture. And the third school, personalized by Anthony Smith, sees the nation as a compromise between the first two schools.

Starting with the basic definition of nation, Abdel Jabbar referred to "culture," as a nationalist marker of different groups and a sign of exclusiveness, which includes languages and race. He then discussed nationness as a result of unified markets, such as currencies and other material webs that unite individuals. In addition, there is a cultural web, made up of the press, universities, print capitalism, and the media. The third is the political apparatus. "Some nations develop the three systems into one unit. Some nations start from a unified market and culture. Only then can a unified political apparatus emerge," Abdel Jabbar said. As for developing countries, they do it the opposite way round and are what are called "artificial nations."

The Arab states, previously part of the Ottoman Empire, faced two layers of identity and therefore two levels of communication: one is the elite and the other is the Islamic identity. In Iraq, social identification was fragmented along religious or sectarian or tribal lines.

"At the moment, there is a fragmentation of identities [In Iraq] beyond imagination," Abdel Jabbar said. "National groups are in different multinational stages." He noted how the British drew Iraq's boundaries and built railways to connect otherwise loosely connected administrative units, namely Mosul, Basra, and Baghdad. The British then installed the political apparatus. Modern private ownership of land was introduced, which created the new Iraqi multiethnic aristocracy.

Abdel Jabbar concluded by discussing Iraq's current situation, saying: "Now, the local identity is hyper- fragmented beyond Sunni, Shiite. and Kurds. Iraqis are renegotiating their identities. Forming identities in Iraq now involves the bulk of national wealth, and controlling the government is controlling the economy and the wealth, which makes it fierce."