One of the panels at the American Academy of Religion (AAR) concerned Middle Eastern Christianity and it was very very good. Aaron Sokoll’s paper, of interest to those of us studying Orthodoxy in America, basically discussed how Evangelical converts to Orthodoxy were being converted to the AOCANA viewpoint concerning Syria, with the intention that these same converts (once converted to see Syrian politics in the correct light) could then be spokespersons to others in America. It was an interesting paper. Most of the discussion centered around Christians in the Middle East. Even Carolyn Ramzy, who’s paper concerned Canadian Copts, actually answered questions concerning Egypt. The questions were all geared toward Christianity in the Middle East itself and how the political situation is affecting it. Here’s a look at the panel:
Middle Eastern Christianity Group
Theme: The Arab Spring and Its Aftermath: Reactions by Middle Eastern Christians (On Both Sides of the Atlantic)
Jason Zaborowski, Bradley University, Presiding
Sunday – 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Room Assignments Available Only to Members. Login here
and then click the Program Book link at the top of the page to return.
This round table panel provides an opportunity to look back on the developments connected to the ‘Arab Spring’ among Christian communities living in the Middle East and in the diaspora.
Issues to be discussed include matters of identity and self definition; patterns of leadership; and the modification of traditional discourses e.g. those concerning national unity, citizenship, and martyrdom.
Michel Andraos, Catholic Theological Union
Between Winter and Spring: Ambivalent Reactions from the Christian Communities in the Middle East
Bouchra Bouyoub, City University, London
The Lebanese Christian Maronites Standing at a Historic Crossroads between Hariri and Nasrallah?
Martin Rowe, Boston University
Challenging Church, State, and Status Quo: Coptic Protest and the Egyptian Uprisings of 2011
Carolyn Ramzy, University of Toronto
“Egypt Lives Inside Us”: Coptic-Canadians Negotiate Pope Shenouda III’s Death in Poetry and Song
Aaron Sokoll, University of California, Santa Barbara
Cradle and Convert Antiochian Orthodox Christians in the US React to the Arab Spring
Janaan Hashim, McCormick Theological Seminary
Teaching the Arab Spring (in a North American Seminary)
Rami Tanous, University of Toronto
Post-Colonial Perspective on the History of Middle Eastern Christians Under Arab Rule: From Integrated Majorities to Disintegrated Minorities
Mitri Raheb, Diyar Consortium and Christmas Lutheran Church, Bethlehem
Mark Swanson, Lutheran School of Theology, Chicago