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March 13 Crown Seminar — How Sanctions Work: Iran and the Impact of Economic Warfare

Do sanctions in Iran work in the way they should? In this Crown Seminar, Narges Bajoghli and Vali Nasr will argue that after four decades, sanctions have—despite intentions otherwise—become a cause of war.

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March 1 Deadline — Student Research Grant

The summer/fall 2024 application cycle for Brandeis undergraduate and graduate student research grants is now open. The maximum grant award is $5,000.

Headshot of Ambassador Daniel C. Kurtzer

March 6 Crown Seminar

Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel and Egypt Daniel C. Kurtzer will explore the implications of the Israel-Hamas war for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, domestic and regional politics in the Middle East, and more.

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The Crown Center for Middle East Studies is committed to conducting balanced and dispassionate research of the modern Middle East that meets the highest academic standards. The center seeks to help make decision- and opinion-makers better informed about the region. The scope of the center's research includes the 22 members of the Arab League as well as Turkey, Iran and Israel. The Crown Center's approach is multidisciplinary in its study of the politics, economics, history, security, sociology and anthropology of the region's states and societies.

Upcoming Events

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All Crown Seminars are held virtually.

Latest Crown Publication

Cleric Mousarreza Nadali, right, teaches his students at Feizieh seminary at the city of Qom, some 80 miles (125 kilometers) south of the capital Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023

In our latest Middle East Brief, Mohammad Ataie argues that the Islamic Republic has been hindered by the multiple sources of authority within the Shiʿi seminaries, as well as opposition from the clerical establishment. Rather than subduing the clergy and bringing seminaries under its control, the state’s efforts have had the opposite effect: exacerbating divisions within the clerical establishment and bolstering the resolve — on the part of not only reformist clerics but conservative ones as well — to voice their opposition to the state’s interference. Ataie concludes by analyzing the implications of these developments on clerical reactions to the "Woman, Life Freedom" movement.

Image credit: Vahid Salemi via AP

Crown Center Analyses on Hamas and Israel

Seated on a stage from left to right: Michal Ben-Josef Hirsch, Khalil Shikaki, Shai Feldman, and Abdel Monem Said Aly

The Crown Center is dedicated to sharing balanced and dispassionate research on the Middle East. Please see the Crown Center analyses which delve into the roots and evolution of the conflict between Hamas and Israel.

Image credit: Craig Bailey/Perspective Photo

Counter/Argument: A Middle East Podcast

Counter/Argument: A Middle East Podcast

Counter/Argument: A Middle East Podcast is produced by the Crown Center for Middle East Studies at Brandeis University. Through conversations with scholars and practitioners encompassing a variety of disciplines and perspectives, each episode will debunk key misconceptions about the contemporary Middle East. "Counter/Argument" is committed to a balanced and dispassionate approach to the region and to making scholarship more widely accessible. Available wherever you get your podcasts.

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Image credit: Chae Lee