Call for Submissions: 2023 MES Student Paper Prize!

The Middle East Section of the American Anthropological Association invites submissions for our Student Paper Prize. Both undergraduate and graduate students (who have not defended at time of submission) are eligible. The winner will receive a prize of $500, plus a chance to summarize the award-winning paper at the 2023 AAA meeting in Toronto and in Anthropology News, a publication of the AAA that goes to all members of the association. Papers should be no longer than 10,000 words (not including notes and bibliography) and must have been completed no earlier than January 1, 2022. Chapters from a thesis are welcome and should be able to stand alone (and can be revised to do so). Papers should not be published or accepted for publication. The paper should include a cover page with the name of the professor and class for which the paper was written (if applicable) and email addresses for both the student and professor. 

Student paper award submissions should be emailed to the committee chair, Dr Kali Rubaii ( The subject line must say “MES Student Prize.” 

The deadline is August 30, 2023.

Call for submissions for MES’ photo contest!

The Middle East Section (MES) of the AAA is having a photo contest to celebrate our vantages on the MENA region and to support our website!

Photographs should speak broadly to the idea of “Transitions,” the theme of the 2023 AAA conference.

Each submission can include up to 5 photos each with a caption (50-100 words) that explains the date, location, context, and the process through which the photograph was taken. Photos may be submitted as stand-alone images or a short image series meant to be viewed together (please specify). Submissions should be in jpg or tiff.

We encourage submissions from anthropologists and anthropologists-in-the-making, especially from the MENA region. Each person is limited to one submission of five photographs. We ask that those submitting be members of the Middle East Section, except for students, non-tenure track faculty or scholars in the Global South if membership imposes a significant hardship.

The winners will each receive a modest cash prize ($100). Their photos will be used on the website and social media and will be credited each time they are used.

Please make your submission here by Thursday, August 31st:

MES Distinguished Scholar Award 2022

We are thrilled to announce the recipient of the 2022 MES Distinguished Scholar Award: Dr. Farha Ghannam (Swarthmore College).

We will be talking more about her important research and commitment to teaching and mentorship at our business meeting – please join us!

The business meeting will be held on Zoom on November 4th at 3:00-4:15 pm EST, link is forthcoming or available through our AAA communities platform. Come to hear more from the prize committee and celebrate Prof. Ghannam with us!

AAA Denounces Iran’s Brutal Crackdown On Peaceful Protests

As a scholarly and professional association of anthropologists and on behalf of our 8000 members worldwide, the AAA denounces in the strongest possible terms the Iranian government’s attacks on peaceful protests in Iran and the brutal crackdown on students and educational institutions. The most recent reports indicate that more than 200 protestors have been killed by Iranian authorities.

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MES Resolution to Boycott Israeli Academic Institutions

June 13, 2021
The MES section vote on the Resolution to Boycott Israeli Academic Institutions closed Friday June 11 at midnight. Our membership voted overwhelmingly in support of the resolution. The results were as follows:

Yes (In favor of endorsing the resolution): 157 (93.5%)
No (Not in favor of endorsing the resolution): 11 (6.5%)
Abstentions: 0
[Total votes tallied: 168]
Response Rate: 71% (168/238)

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MES Statement on Palestine, updated 5.27.21

We stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people against ongoing settler colonialism and condemn Zionist violence against them, including forced evictions and retaliatory violence by Israeli state forces against Palestinians in the Occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza, and within the state of Israel. We condemn the recent forced evictions of Palestinian families in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem–part of a now decades long campaign of ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem– and Israeli violence perpetrated against families trying to defend their homes.

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MES Statement on the Desecration of the Remains of the Children of MOVE and the Africa Family

The Middle East Section of the American Anthropological Association strongly condemns the desecration of MOVE victims’ remains and unequivocally endorses the statement and list of demands issued by the Association of Black Anthropologists (ABA), the Society of Black Archaeologists (SBA), and the Black in Bioanthropology Collective (BiBA). MES recognizes the deep legacy of racism in our discipline and our shared responsibility to address historic and contemporary wrongs and work towards more ethical practices. The desecration of the MOVE victims’ remains displays the perniciousness of racist thought that erases the humanity of racialized communities and treats their remains as objects rather than as the bodies of humans who deserve equal respect, in life and in death.

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Call for Nominations for the 2021 MES Student Paper Award

The Middle East Section requests submissions for our Student Paper Award. Both undergraduate and graduate students are eligible. The winner will receive a prize of $500, plus a chance to summarize the award winning paper in AN (Anthropology News, a publication of the AAA that goes to all members of the association) and at the 2021 AAA meeting in Baltimore.

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