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The Politics of Education Reform in the Middle East: Self and Other in Textbooks and Curricula

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The Politics of Education Reform in the Middle East

Self and Other in Textbooks and Curricula

Edited by Samira Alayan, Achim Rohde, and Sarhan Dhouib

284 pages, 22 tables, 5 maps, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-0-85745-460-7 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (June 2012)

eISBN 978-0-85745-461-4 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook! $34.95 Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


The essays are very high quality, written by well-qualified researchers, and address a subject of high interest to those concerned with development/political issues related to the Middle East. They…make a significant contribution to the field of educational reform and development, identity construction and nation building.  ·  Eleanor Doumato, Watson Institute, Brown University

This volume will prove a valuable contribution for scholars and policymakers interested in educational policy, curricular reform, historiography, and Arab World identities.”  ·  Nabil Al-Tikriti, University of Mary Washington


Education systems and textbooks in selected countries of the Middle East are increasingly the subject of debate. This volume presents and analyzes the major trends as well as the scope and the limits of education reform initiatives undertaken in recent years. In curricula and teaching materials, representations of the “Self” and the “Other” offer insights into the contemporary dynamics of identity politics. By building on a network of scholars working in various countries in the Middle East itself, this book aims to contribute to the evolution of a field of comparative education studies in this region.

Samira Alayan is Lecturer at the David Yellin College of Education, Jerusalem. Since 2006 she has been a Research Fellow at the Georg-Eckert-Institute for International Textbook Research, Germany. Her research focuses on education in conflict zones, especially in Israel/Palestine, including East Jerusalem, and on education reforms in the Arab Middle East.

Achim Rohde coordinates the research network 'Re-Configurations. History, Memory and Transformative Processes in the Middle East and North Africa' at the Philipps University Marburg. He is the author of State-Society Relations in Ba’thist Iraq. Facing Dictatorship (Routledge, 2010) and co-editor of Iraq Between Occupations: Perspectives from 1920 to the Present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010).

Sarhan Dhouib was a Research Fellow at the Georg-Eckert-Institute for International Textbook Research, Germany in 2008-09, and is currently Research Fellow at the Institute of Philosophy of Kassel University, Germany. He co-edited Al-Islah at-Tarbawi fi-sh-Sharq al-Awsat (with Samira Alayan and Achim Rohde, Dar al-Shurouq, 2010). He was editor of Volume 59 of Concordia about current Arabic-Islamic philosophy and laureate of the Goethe-Institut´s Newcomer Award for Philosophy in 2011.

Subject: Educational Studies Sociology
Area: Middle East & Israel


List of Maps
List of Tables

Achim Rohde and Samira Alayan

Chapter 1. Educational Reform in the Arab World: Directives, Mechanisms, and Challenges in Lebanon, Syria, and Oman
Nemer Mansur Frayha

Chapter 2. Education Reform in Oman: Evolution of Secondary School Curricula
Salha Abdullah Issan

Chapter 3. Educational Developments in Jordan from the 1950s until Today: Stages and Characteristics
Mohammad Khalil Abbas

Chapter 4. Major Trends of Educational Reform in Egypt
Iman Farag

Chapter 5. On the Impossibility of Teaching History in Lebanon: Notes on a Textbook Controversy
Massoud Daher

Chapter 6. History Textbooks in Egyptian Schools: A Tool for the Representation of Collective Memory
Atef Botros

Chapter 7. Different Layers of Identity in Lebanese Textbooks
Jonathan Kriener

Chapter 8. The Philosophical Foundations of Education and the Range of its Implications for the Content of Civic Education Textbooks in Jordan
Mustafa Abu al-Sheikh and Yasser al-Khalailah

Chapter 9. Gender Images in Jordanian Textbooks in the Subject Field of Social Education
Naseema al-Khalidi

Chapter 10. Images of Europeans in Jordanian Textbooks
Qasem al-Newashi

Chapter 11. History Curricula and Textbooks in Palestine: Between Nation Building and Quality Education
Samira Alayan

Chapter 12. Bridging Conflicts through History Education? A Case Study from Israel/Palestine
Achim Rohde

Notes on Contributors

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