Community Discussion Honors Late Middle East Journalist Anthony ShadidPosted Apr. 10, 2012
Widely regarded as the best American journalist covering the Middle East, Anthony Shadid died tragically while covering the conflict in Syria this past February.
Shadid, a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning foreign correspondent for The New York Times, was originally scheduled to come to Cleveland in March as part of the Northeast Ohio Consortium for Middle East Studies (NOCMES) speaker series.
To honor his work and memory, a community discussion of Shadid’s last book “House of Stone” will be held on Thursday, April 19, at 7 p.m. at the Cuyahoga County Public Library, located at 25501 Shaker Blvd. in Beachwood, Ohio.
“We were all tremendously saddened by his loss,” said Joshua Stacher, assistant professor of political science at Kent State University and a co-founder of the Northeast Ohio Consortium for Middle East Studies. “His work really spoke to the NOCMES initiative about raising awareness and developing empathetic understanding of the Middle East.”
“House of Stone” tells the story of Shadid’s two-year effort to restore a decaying estate built by his great grandfather in South Lebanon. Shadid was on assignment for The New York Times when he died on Feb. 16 from a reported asthma attack while attempting to leave Syria on horseback.
“The book speaks to the transnational connections that all of us have to one another, and that’s why this is important,” Stacher said. “Shadid’s work embodies the mission of our speaker series about bringing the Middle East to Northeast Ohio.”
Dan Moulthrop, curator of conversation for the Civic Commons, will facilitate the discussion, which is free and open to the public. Registration is requested at http://www.cuyahogalibrary.org/EventRegistration.aspx?EventInstanceID=70047.
“Shadid was simply the best journalist working on the Middle East in a generation,” Stacher said.
NOCMES was founded in 2010 when higher education institutions in Northeast Ohio - including Kent State, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland State University and Oberlin College - recognized a need for educational forums to understand the complicated issues affecting the Middle East as well as the cultural, economic, political and social influences that contribute to the dynamics of the region’s problems.
In addition to Stacher, the consortium leaders include Pete W. Moore from the Department of Political Science at Case Western Reserve and Neda A. Zawahri, Department of Political science at Cleveland State.
The series “New Perspectives on Muslim and Middle Eastern Societies” is presented by NOCMES, with support from the Social Science Research Council and in partnership with Civic Commons, Ideastream and the City Club of Cleveland.
For more information, visit http://theciviccommons.com/issues/new-perspectives/?from=newperspectives.