Special issue of the International Journal of Middle East Studies (IJMES)
Guest editor: Julia Clancy-Smith
Until roughly a decade ago, modern North African history occupied a rather marginal position relative to the histories of adjacent regions. Edmund Burke III’s observation that North Africa was “not quite African, not quite Arab, not quite European, the Maghrib inhabits a space between the essentialisms evoked by each” still held more or less true. Since then, however, the Maghrib’s alleged liminality has proven instead to be a rich source of intellectual inquiry, scholarly debate, and theorizing. Just as importantly, research in the past ten years has connected what used to be somewhat distinct historical sub-fields in novel ways. And scholarly associations that once embodied those different fields have experienced considerable “in-migrations” and trans-associational traffic as younger scholars especially formulate and tackle new questions regarding North Africa from circa 1800 until the contemporary era. Now the Maghrib is seen as sitting at the confluence of multiple worlds and historical processes: Arab-Berber northern Africa, Europe, the Mediterranean, and, until the post-World War I period, the Ottoman Empire.
Nevertheless, IJMES has not benefited to the extent it might have from article submissions devoted to modern North African history. This special issue invites submissions from scholars in the historical sciences* working on various periods from the late eighteenth century on, whose primary focus are the peoples, societies, and states in what we now know as Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya. We seek research that questions older periodizations, chronologies, binaries, and moments of rupture, or that is comparative and/or transnational in nature, as well as scholarship that rethinks historical narratives that were earlier conceptualized as bounded, e.g., for the colonial eras, the histories of the peoples assigned to the monolithic category of “settlers” or resident “Europeans.”
*Submitting authors need not be historians, but papers should have a historical perspective. The deadline for submission is March 15, 2011. Authors should follow the regular guidelines for submitting an article to IJMES (http://web.gc.cuny.edu/ijmes/pages/submissions.html). All articles in special issues must be accepted individually through the IJMES peer review process. Any accepted article that was submitted before March 15, 2011 and that fits the above description may be considered for publication in the special issue.