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Department of the Languages and Cultures of the Near and Middle East

Staff of the Department of Near & Middle Eastern Studies

Head of Department

Professor Wen-chin Ouyang

Undergraduate Admissions Tutor

Mr Mohamed I Said

Undergraduate Programme Convenors

Professor Andrew George (BA Ancient Near Eastern Studies)

Dr Mustafa Shah (BA Arabic, BA Arabic and Islamic Studies, BA Arabic plus another subject )

Professor Muhammad Abdel Haleem, (BA Islamic Studies)

Dr Tamar Drukker (BA Hebrew & Israeli Studies, BA Hebrew plus another subject)

Dr Yair Wallach (BA Hebrew & Israeli Studies, BA Hebrew plus another subject)

Dr Mark Weeden (BA Middle Eastern Studies, BA Middle Eastern Studies plus another subject)

Ms Narguess Farzad (BA Persian, BA Persian plus another subject)

Dr Nima Mina (BA Persian, BA Persian plus another subject)

Dr Yorgos Dedes (BA Turkish, BA Turkish plus another subject)

Professor George Hewitt (BA another subject plus Georgian)

Postgraduate Programme Convenors

Professor Andrew George (MA Ancient Near Eastern Studies)

Professor Wen-Chin Ouyang (MA Arabic Literature, MA Palestine Studies)

Dr Ayman Shihadeh (MA Islamic Societies and Cultures)

Dr Nima Mina (MA Iranian Studies)

Professor Muhammad Abdel Haleem (MA Islamic Studies)

Dr Yair Wallach (MA Israeli Studies)

Dr Yorgos Dedes (MA Near and Middle Eastern Studies)

Dr Yorgos Dedes (MA Turkish Studies)

Certificate Convenors

Mr Mohamed I Said (Arabic and Arabic Studies)

Postgraduate Research Tutor

Professor George Hewitt

Please note that for Masters Students the Admissions Tutor and Personal Tutor is the Postgraduate Programme Convenor


Muhammad A S Abdel Haleem, OBE
King Fahd Professor of Islamic Studies
Muhammad A S Abdel Haleem Qur’an, Hadith, Tafsir; Islam in society; classical and modern Arabic literature
  • Tel: 020 7898 4325
  • Email: ha4@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 427
  • Office Hours: Tuesdays 12:00-13:00/Wednesdays 12:00-13:00
Andrew R George
Professor of Babylonian
Andrew George Cuneiform and Ancient Mesopotamian studies
  • Tel: 020 7898 4335
  • Email: ag5@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 414
  • Office Hours: E-mail for appointment

B George Hewitt
Professor of Caucasian Languages
George Hewitt Caucasian languages (especially South and North-West Caucasian) and linguistics; language work
Hugh N Kennedy
Professor of Arabic
Staff Silhouette

Medieval history of Arabic-speaking lands.

Wen-chin Ouyang
Professor of Arabic and Comparative Literature
Wen-chin Ouyang Classical and modern Arabic literature and culture, with emphasis on narrative and storytelling, comparative narratology and critical theory, and gendered thinking and discourse.
  • Tel: 020 7898 4348
  • Email: wo@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 435
  • Office Hours: Tuesdays 1-2pm/Wednesdays 12noon-1pm
Colin Shindler
Pears Senior Research Fellow in Israel Studies
Colin Shindler History and politics of Israel; Zionism

Senior Lecturers

Yorgos Dedes
Senior Lecturer in Turkish
Staff Silhouette Early Anatolian Turkish; Ottoman language and literature; Ottoman history; Turkish-Greek relations; modern Turkish culture
  • Tel: 020 7898 4344
  • Email: gd5@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 424
  • Office Hours: Fridays 15:00-17:00
Ayman El-Desouky
Senior Lecturer in Arabic and Comparative Literature
Ayman El-Desouky

Comparative Literature, 19th and 20th Century Arabic Literature, hermeneutics, modern philosophy and theory.

  • Tel: 020 7898 4355
  • Email: ad48@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 423
  • Office Hours: Mon 2:30- 4, Tues 1- 2:30 and by appointment

Marlé Hammond
Senior Lecturer in Arabic Popular Literature and Culture
Marle Hammond

Senior Lecturer in Arabic Popular Literature & Culture.  

Karima Laachir
Senior Lecturer in Literary & Cultural Studies
Karima Laachir

Literary and cultural studies: postcolonial studies, diaspora studies and comparative literature

  • Tel: 020 7898 4336
  • Email: kl19@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 365
  • Office Hours: Fridays 1.30pm-2.30pm

Nima Mina
Senior Lecturer in Persian and Iranian Studies
Staff Silhouette Classical and Modern Persian literature, Orientalism in 18th-20th century Europe, Middle Eastern minority writers in Europe, Diaspora studies, music performance, translation studies
  • Tel: 020 7898 4315
  • Email: nm46@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 422
  • Office Hours: Tuesdays 13:00-15:00 / Weds 11:00-13:00
Mustafa Shah
Senior Lecturer in Islamic Studies
Staff Silhouette The early Arabic linguistic tradition; classical Islamic theology and jurisprudence
  • Tel: 020 7898 4341
  • Email: ms99@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 434a
  • Office Hours: Fridays 11.30am-1.30pm/Email for an appointment

Ayman Shihadeh
Senior Lecturer in Islamic Studies
Ayman Shihadeh

Medieval Arabic Intellectual History; medieval Arabic philosophy; medieval Islamic theology, especially kalam; ethical theory; the Islamic manuscript tradition.

Stefan Sperl
Senior Lecturer in Arabic
Staff Silhouette Classical Arabic literature; medieval Arabic popular literature; court poetry and oral literature; refugee studies and refugee-related issues

Katherine P Zebiri
Senior Lecturer in Arabic
Staff Silhouette Arabic language and literature, modern Islamic studies


Christopher Lucas
Lecturer in Arabic Linguistics
Chris Lucas

Historical linguistics, Arabic linguistics, the syntax–semantics interface, pragmatics, philosophy of language, Dynamic Syntax, Relevance Theory, Arabic language, Afro-Asiatic languages

  • Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4318
  • Email: cl39@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 447
  • On Sabbatical:2014-15 academic session
Yair Wallach
Pears Lecturer in Israeli Studies
Yair Wallach
  • Tel: 020 7898 4337
  • Email: yw11@soas.ac.uk
  • On Sabbatical:On leave term 1 & term 2, 2014-15

Mark Weeden
Lecturer in Ancient Near Eastern Studies
Staff Silhouette

Hittite, Akkadion language and literature in Syria

  • Tel: 020 7898 4328
  • Email: mw41@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 421
  • Office Hours: Mondays & Thursdays 11am-12noon

Senior Fellows

Narguess Farzad
Senior Fellow in Persian
Narguess Farzad Persian language and literature. Organiser of SOAS-Cambridge Undergraduate workshops
  • Tel: 020 7898 4346
  • Email: nf1@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 440
  • Office Hours: Mondays 1.30-2.30pm/Thursdays 1-2pm

Principal Lectors

Mohamed I Said
Principal Lector in Arabic
Mohamed I Said Arabic language teaching
  • Tel: 020 7898 4353
  • Email: ms15@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 425
  • Office Hours: Monday 12-2pm/Tuesday 2-3pm/Thursday 1.30-2.30pm

Senior Lectors

Ahmad Alkhashem
Senior Lector in Arabic
Ahmad Alkhashem
  • Tel: 020 7898 4208
  • Email: aa40@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 434
  • Office Hours: Mondays 14:00-15:00 / Tuesdays 14:00-15:00
Maha Collinson
Senior Lector in Arabic
Maha Collinson
  • Tel: 020 7898 4409
  • Email: mc86@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 446
  • Office Hours: Tuesdays 13:30-14:30 / Thursdays 13:30- 14:30
  • On Sabbatical:On leave September 2014- August 2015

Tamar Drukker
Senior Lector in Hebrew
Staff Silhouette Modern Hebrew; medieval literature
  • Tel: 020 7898 4347
  • Email: td4@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 446
  • Office Hours: Tuesdays 2-3pm or email for an appointment
Nada Elzeer
Senior Lector in Arabic
Staff Silhouette Arabic language and translation
  • Tel: 020 7898 4340
  • Email: ne5@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 432
  • On Sabbatical:On leave September 2014- August 2015

Mona Hammad
Senior Lector in Arabic
Staff Silhouette
Nisrine Jaafar
Senior Lector in Arabic
Staff Silhouette
  • Tel: 020 7898 4409
  • Email: nj13@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 446
  • Office Hours: Fridays 11.30am-1.30pm

Principal Teaching Fellow

Muaadh Salih
Principal Teaching Fellow and Arabic Project Co-ordinator
Staff Silhouette

Computer-assisted language learning; orality and oral literature of the Gulf; Arabic language pedagogy

  • Tel: 020 7898 4354
  • Email: ms1@soas.ac.uk
  • Room: 429
  • Office Hours: Mondays 12-1pm/Wednesdays 12-1pm

Teaching Fellows

Ayse Berna Akca
Teaching Fellow in Turkish and Yunus Emre Language Fellow 2012-13
Staff Silhouette
Keya Anjaria
Senior Teaching Fellow in Turkish
Staff Silhouette

The Novel; 20th Century Turkish Literature; Turkish Cinema; World Literature; Comparative Literature;  20th Century Literary Criticism; Modernity and Modernization in late 19th and 20th Century Turkey.

Helen Blatherwick
Teaching Fellow in Arabic
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

Classical Arabic literature, Popular literature, Comparative literature

Sorour Dundon
Teaching Fellow in Persian
Staff Silhouette

Gamon McLellan
Teaching Fellow in Turkish
Gamon McLellan
Shabnam Mirafzali
Teaching Fellow in Persian
NME-Shabnam Mirafzali-240

Savitri Sperl
Teaching Fellow in Arabic
Staff Silhouette
Frans van Koppen
Teaching Fellow in Ancient Near Eastern Studies
Staff Silhouette

Visiting Professors

Abdul Hakim Ibrahim Al-Matroudi
Visting Professor in Arabic (Islamic Law)
Staff Silhouette

Islamic  Law

Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak
Leverhulme Visiting Professor
Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak

This year Professor Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak, University of Maryland, is Leverhulme Visiting Professor in the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures at SOAS and the Centre for Iranian Studies (CIS) at the London Middle East Institute where he will be offering several lectures, completing his research project on the exilic mode in Persian literature, and providing consultation in the process of  the expansion and updating of the Department's course offerings and areas of research development.  

Visiting Readers

Jareer Abu Haidar
Visiting Reader
Staff Silhouette


Professorial Research Associates

Farouk N H Al-Rawi
Professorial Research Associate
Staff Silhouette
Lewis H Glinert
Professorial Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

Bruce Ingham
Professorial Research Associate
Bruce Ingham

General descriptive linguistics, Arabic, Persian, North American Indian languages, dialects and oral literature of the Arabian Peninsula - in particular the dialects of the Arabian bedouin, covering the dialects of the Al Dhafir, Mutair, Al Murrah and Rwalah tribes; Lakota (Siouan), Cree (Algonquian)

Samuel Lieu
Professorial Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

Harry Norris
Professorial Research Associate
Staff Silhouette
Nicholas Sims-Williams
Nicholas Sims-Williams Iranian and Central Asian philology; Christian and Manichaean texts from Central Asia.

Marina Warner
Professorial Research Associate
Marina Warner

Research Associates

Shirin Akiner
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette Politics in Central Asia; gender issues in Central Asia; Islam in Central Asia; Islam, ethnicity, nation building, political change and security in Central Asia.
Lamia Al-Gailani
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette


Fahad Al-Zumai
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette
Sarah Bin Tyeer
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

Peter Clark
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette
Igor Dorfmann-Lazarev
Research Associate
Igor Dorfmann-Lazarev

Armenian History and Culture

Rabab Hamiduddin
Reserach Associate
Staff Silhouette
Robert Irwin
Research Associate
Robert Irwin

Marie-Christine Ludwig
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette


Krikor Moskofian
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

West Armenian language and literature

Ahmed Moustafa
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette
Aziz Qutbuddin
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette

Daniel Schwemer
Research Associate
Daniel Schwemer Ancient Near Eastern studies, especially cuneiform
Cornelia Wunsch
Research Associate
Staff Silhouette Assyriology

Senior Research Fellows