A major international conference re-examining the origins, conduct and consequences of the First World War in the Middle East is to be held at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst from April 20th-21st 2016.
Historians from the around the world will gather at the British Army's officer training academy to examine the complexities of a conflict whose consequences are still felt in the region.
The aim is to widen discussion from the European experience of 1914-18, relating the Great War to the broader period of conflict that affected the Ottoman Empire from 1911 to 1923.
Significant Centenary anniversaries in 2016 include the defeat of a British/Indian force at Kut; the outbreak of the Arab revolt against Turkish rule, and the Sykes-Picot agreement between Britain and France for dividing the Ottoman Empire.
The conference registration fee is £100 - reduced to £75 for postgraduate students and early career researchers (book by February 19th to secure reduction).
Accommodation and dinners can also be booked as optional extras.
10.30 – 10.40 Welcome and Opening Remarks
RMAS Commandant and Director of Studies
10.40 – 12.30 Panel 1: Global Strategy and the Middle East
Chair: Matthew Hughes (Brunel)
*James Renton (Edge Hill) – The British Idea of the Middle East and its Consequences
*Hervé François (Historial de la Grande Guerre) – France
*Christopher Read (Warwick) – Russia
*Peter Lieb (ZMSBw, Potsdam) – German Policy towards the Middle East in 1918
12.30 – 13.30 Lunch
13.30 – 15.30 Panel 2: Beliefs and War
Chair: John Darwin (Oxford)
*Adrian Gregory (Oxford) – Western ‘Crusading’ in the Middle East
*Roberto Mazza (Limerick) – Alone, with the Enemy or With God? The Christian Churches of Palestine during the War
*Yucel Yanikdag (University of Richmond) – Ottoman Jihad
*John Slight (Cambridge) – Jihad Beyond the Ottoman Empire
16.00 – 18.00 Panel 3: Military Operations and Adaptation
Chair: James Kitchen (RMAS)
*Kaushik Roy (Jadavpur) – Learning and Fighting: The Indian Army in Mesopotamia and Syria, 1914-1918
*Aimée Fox-Godden (Birmingham) – ‘From Experience Gained in France’: Disseminating and Adapting Western Front Lessons in the Middle Eastern Theatres, 1914-1918
*Metin Gurcan (Bilkent) – Gallipoli
19.00 Formal Conference Dinner
Old College Dining Room
(Optional – must be booked separately)
Thursday 21 April 2016
09.30 – 11.00 Panel 4: Imperial Home Fronts and ‘Total War’
Chair: Roberto Mazza (Limerick)
*Leila Fawaz (Tufts) – Civilians and Soldiers in the Levant 1914-1918
*Mario Ruiz (Hofstra) – Martial Law, Rural Labourers, and the Egyptian Home Front, 1914-1918
*Oliver Bast (Manchester) – ‘The Rape of Persia’? – World War I in Neutral Iran as a Humanitarian Disaster
11.30 – 13.00 Panel 5: Tactics and Combat in the Middle East
Chair: Robert Johnson (Oxford)
*David Murphy (Maynooth) – The Arab Revolt, 1916-18: Sideshow or Major Campaign?
*Nikolas Gardner (RMC Canada) – Tactics and Morale in Indian Expeditionary Force ‘D’, 1915-1916
13.00 – 14.00 Lunch
14.00 – 15.30 Panel 6: Building and Challenging Post-War Empires
Chair: Peter Lieb (ZMSBw, Potsdam)
*James Kitchen (RMAS) – Egypt 1919: The British Army and Counter-Revolutionary Operations
*Robert Fletcher (Warwick) – Imperial Frontiers
*Michael Provence (UCSD) – Ottoman Military Culture and Anti-colonial Insurgency in Greater Syria
16.00 – 17.30 Panel 7: Representations of the First World War in the Middle East
Chair: Adrian Gregory (Oxford)
*Justin Fantauzzo (Memorial University, St John’s) – Amongst Gyppos, Jews, Arabs, and Abdul: Imperial Soldiers and the Levant in Inter-war Fiction
*Nadia Atia (QMUL) – Murder in Mesopotamia: Agatha Christie’s Life and Work in the Middle East
*Jenny Macleod (Hull) – Memory/Representation of Gallipoli
*Gizem Tongo (Oxford) – Ottoman Art of the First World War
19.00 Buffet Dinner
Victory College Dining Room
(Optional – must be booked separately)
Source: Department of War Studies, RMA Sandhurst
Images courtesy of RMA Sandhurst
Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News