Department of History
160 Packard Ave
Medford, MA 02155
Email Prof. Fawaz
Issam M. Fares Chair of Lebanese & Eastern Mediterranean Studies
Leila Fawaz is the Issam M. Fares Professor of Lebanese and
Eastern Mediterranean Studies. Born in the Sudan and raised in
Lebanon, Professor Fawaz received a B.A. and M.A. in History from
the American University of Beirut and an M.A. and Ph.D. in History
from Harvard University. She joined the Tufts faculty in 1979 as an
Assistant Professor and was promoted to the rank of Professor in
She served as Chair of the History Department from 1994 to 1996,
Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Jackson College, and
Associate Dean of the Faculty between 1996 and 2001. She was
Founding Director of the Fares Center for Eastern Mediterranean
Studies at Tufts University between 2001 and 2012. She holds a dual
appointment as Professor of Diplomacy at The Fletcher School and
Professor of History at Tufts University.
In 2020, Harvard University awarded Professor Fawaz with the Harvard
Medal. In 2014 she received the Harvard Alumni Association's
Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2012, Professor Fawaz was named a
Chevalier in the French National Order of the Legion of Honor,
France's highest award, given by decree of the president of France.
She served on the Governing Boards of Harvard University as an
Overseer between 1996 and 2012 and was elected to serve as President
of the Overseers for 2011-12. A Carnegie Scholar (2008-10), she is a
member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the
Comité Scientifique of the Maison Méditerranéenne des Sciences de
l'Homme at the Université d'Aix-Marseille in France. She served on
several committees for the European Science Foundation in
Strasbourg, France as well as on committees of the Social Science
Research Council, the Steering Committee of the European Science
Foundation, and as a delegate to the American Council of Learned
Professor Fawaz has been awarded fellowships from the Social Science
Research Council and has received the Lillian Leibner Award for
Distinguished Teaching and Advising at Tufts University. She has
been a Visiting Professor at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences
Politiques et Sociales, Paris, and at the Université de Provence,
Aix-en-Provence. In 2000, she received the International Institute
of Boston's New Citizen Award, which is given to immigrants who have
made significant contributions within their respective communities.
In 2006-2007, she was awarded a visiting fellowship at All Souls
College (Oxford University).
Professor Fawaz has served as president of the Middle East Studies
Association of North America and of the Alumni Association in North
America of the American University of Beirut (AANA). As president of
the AANA, she also served as ex-officio trustee on the American
University of Beirut Board of Trustees. Her editorial posts have
included the positions of general editor of the book series "History
and Society of the Modern Middle East" at Columbia University Press,
editor of the International Journal of Middle East Studies (IJMES),
and editorial board positions with the American Historical Review,
IJMES, the British Middle East Studies Association Review, Revue du
Monde Musulman et de la Méditerranée, among others.
A social historian who specializes in the Eastern Mediterranean
region, with specific emphasis on the Arab provinces of the Ottoman
Empire in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Professor
Fawaz has published A Land of Aching Hearts: The Middle East in the
Great War (Harvard University Press, 2014), Transformed Landscapes:
Essays on Palestine and the Middle East in Honor of Walid Khalidi
(co-editor, the American University in Cairo Press, 2009), Modernity
and Culture from the Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean (co-editor,
Columbia University Press, 2002), An Occasion for War: Mount Lebanon
and Damascus in 1860 (I. B. Tauris, 1994 and University of
California Press, 1995), State and Society in Lebanon (editor,
Oxford: Centre for Lebanese Studies, 1991), and Merchants and
Migrants in Nineteenth Century Beirut (Harvard University Press,
Professor Fawaz is married to Karim Fawaz, a gastroenterologist at
the Cambridge Health Alliance and a former tennis champion of
Lebanon and Davis cup player.
- B.A. from American University of Beirut
- M.A. from American University of Beirut
- M.A. from Harvard University
- Ph.D. from Harvard University
- A Land of Aching Hearts: The Middle East in the Great War (2014).
- (Co-editor) Transformed Landscapes: Essays on Palestine and
the Middle East in Honor of Walid Khalidi (2009).
- (Co-editor) Modernity and Culture: From the
Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean (2002).
- An Occasion for War: Conflict in Mount
Lebanon and Damascus in 1860 (1994).
- State and Society in Lebanon (1991).
- Merchants and Migrants in Nineteenth
Century Beirut (1983).
- HIST 208 / DHP H262 "A Century of Transformation: Western -
Middle Eastern Relations from the 1920s to the Present
- History 209 / DHP H261: War and Society in the Middle East in Historical Perspective
- DHP D263: The Arabs and Their Neighbors