Rogan, Eugene L.
Rogan, Eugene L.
University of Oxford, Oxford England, lecturer in modern history of the Middle East, fellow of St. Antony's College.
Albert Hourani Book Award and Koprulu Prize, both 2000, both for Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire: Transjordan, 1850-1921.
(Editor, with Tariq Tell) Village, Steppe and State: The Social Origins of Modern Jordan, British Academic Press (New York, NY), 1994.
(Editor, with Alan K. Bowman) Agriculture in Egypt: From Pharaonic to Modern Times, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 1999.
(Editor, with Avi Shlaim) The War for Palestine: Rewriting the History of 1948, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 2001, 2nd edition, 2007.
(Editor) Outside In: On the Margins of the Modern Middle East, I.B. Tauris (New York, NY), 2002.
Eugene L. Rogan is a historian whose research interests include the Arab world from the eighteenth century to the twentieth century, the Arab provinces of the Ottoman Empire, the Palestine War of 1948, and World War I in the Middle East. As a lecturer at the Oriental Institute at St. Antony's College of the University of Oxford, Rogan has taught the courses such as "The Middle East in Modern Times: History of the Middle East in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries" and "The History of the Palestinian Mandate," a graduate methodology seminar.
Rogan is the author or editor of a number of volumes, including Agriculture in Egypt: From Pharaonic to Modern Times, which he edited with Alan K. Bowman. This collection of eighteen scholarly papers by Egyptologists, anthropologists, and historians from the United States, Egypt, and Britain include two contributions about the Dynastic period, three on the Ptolemaic, two on the Roman, four on the medieval, and five on the modern period. In reviewing the volume in Antiquity, N. James found it to be "a thorough case study in historical geography, with special attention to administration, economic systems and technology."
Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire: Transjordan, 1850-1921 is Rogan's revisionist interpretation of the history of Transjordan, which until the middle of the nineteenth century was a frontier region of the Ottoman province of Syria. The Ottoman state extended its rule to this region, which strategically linked Syria to Arabia and Palestine. Rogan draws on archival materials from Ottoman, Arabic, and European sources in documenting how the Ottoman state redefined and restructured itself during the last years of its empire. He further studies the concept of frontier as a cultural and geographic boundary, as well as the process of state formation that resulted in the creation of the contemporary Middle East. He concludes with an examination of the Ottoman legacy in Jordan.
"Rogan's study makes a significant contribution to scholarly discussions of Ottoman and Middle Eastern history by pointing out just how effective Ottoman provincial administration could be in the late nineteenth century," noted Jonathan Grant in History: Review of New Books. Matthew Hughes commented in the English Historical Review that the volume "also provides fascinating bits of information on life in the ‘Wild West’ of the Ottoman empire during the nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries." James L. Gelvin wrote in the Middle East Journal: "Rogan avoids the snares of nationalist historiography and situates the history of the Transjordanian frontier squarely within the context of an Ottoman state which, over the course of the 19th century, catalyzed the transformation and redefinition of local social, economic, and political structures."
Rogan is the editor, with Avi Shlaim, of The War for Palestine: Rewriting the History of 1948, a collection of studies that cover the foreign policy and actions of the states involved, including Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Israel, as well as the stateless Palestinians and Druze. There is no mention of Lebanon. Middle East contributor Fred Rhodes wrote: "The result is a book which is rich in new material and new insights and which enhances considerably our understanding of the historical roots of the Arab-Israeli conflict." Scholar contributors include Edward Said, Benny Morris, Fawaz Gerges, Laila Parsons, and Rashid Khalidi. While some of the essays are expansions of previously published materials, most are original to this volume and introduce new topics and viewpoints.
In reviewing The War for Palestine in History: Review of New Books, John J. McTague wrote: "Overall, this work can be highly recommended as a dispassionate, scholarly overview of one of the most significant events in modern history: the creation of Israel and the displacement of thousands of Palestinians. The variety and quality of the participants is of the highest order."
Outside In: On the Margins of the Modern Middle East is a collection of essays by contributors who include Rudolph Peters, Francois Georgeon, Khaled Fahmy, Mine Ener, Eyal Ginio, Julia Clancy-Smith, Jens Hanssen, Kharin van Nieuwkerk, Sami Zubaida, and Rogan. They explore the boundaries of what constituted marginality in the eastern Mediterranean and how the notion of marginality changed with time. The essays view the individual in the context of his or her society within a specific time frame. With studies of Tunisia, Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Ottoman Istanbul, and Salonica, the collection covers the breadth of the Mediterranean Muslim world. Most of the essays concentrate on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and are organized around four broad themes: prohibitions, institutions, port cities, and performers.
The prohibitions discussed in the first part of the book are of alcohol, coffee, and drugs. Georgeon writes about the consumption of alcohol in Istanbul, once banned but later accepted, first for men, then for foreigners of both sexes. Fahmy writes of prostitution in Egypt and of cases where women committed crimes of theft because of their alcohol consumption. Also discussed are brothels, asylums, prisons, and almshouses. Immigrant laborers and other socially marginalized people are studied, especially those who made their livings in port cities, in agriculture, and as domestics. Young girls sent to Beirut to work as silk reelers chose to earn more by becoming prostitutes.
Netice Yildiz noted in Kadin/Woman 2000: "Sami Zubaida is another author whose paper described marginalised people in Bagdad between 1900-50 who worked in the entertainment business. Among these are the singers and musicians. It was in the 1950s that women singers such as Afifa Iskandar and Zakiyya George sang the first feminist songs. These singers, including Salima and Zuhur Huseyin, managed to rise above the level of the milieu of prostitutes gaining the status of ‘performance artist.’ This occurred after the 1930s when new media such as teatro, malha, cabarets and music halls with different degrees of respectability, were opened." Yildiz also commented: "Finally it could be said that Outside In offers a fascinating new perspective on Middle Eastern society in the modern period where women have gained freedom in some countries such as Turkey, Greece, Tunisia or Syria. But it is still regretful to find the authorities in some countries still apply bans to women and treat them badly in some professions such as certain performance media arts." Yildiz concluded her review of the volume by writing that "the references and notes are witness to extensive research while different research methods make important contributions towards writing of a social history."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Historical Review, December, 2000, Robert Tignor, review of Agriculture in Egypt: From Pharaonic to Modern Times, p. 1840; June, 2002, Mary C. Wilson, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire: Transjordan, 1850-1921, p. 978; February, 2004, Jane Hathaway, review of Outside In: On the Margins of the Modern Middle East, p. 293.
Antiquity, June, 2000, N. James, review of Agriculture in Egypt, p. 430.
Arab Studies Quarterly, fall, 2001, review of The War for Palestine: Rewriting the History of 1948, p. 152.
Asian Affairs, June, 2001, Ivor Lucas, review of The War for Palestine, p. 204.
Booklist, February 15, 2001, Jay Freeman, review of The War for Palestine, p. 1113.
Choice, July 1, 2000, F. Ahmad, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 2033.
Contemporary Review, December, 2001, Charles Foster, review of The War for Palestine, p. 369.
English Historical Review, November, 2000, Matthew Hughes, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 1346; September, 2002, William Roger Louis, review of The War for Palestine, p. 931.
European History Quarterly, October, 2001, Selim Deringil, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 628.
Foreign Affairs, September, 2001, L. Carl Brown, review of The War for Palestine, p. 172.
History: Review of New Books, spring, 2000, Jonathan Grant, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 132; fall, 2001, John J. McTague, review of The War for Palestine, p. 33.
International Affairs, July, 2001, Nur Masalha, review of The War for Palestine, p. 742.
International History Review, September, 2002, Mary C. Wilson, review of The War for Palestine, p. 708.
International Journal of Middle East Studies, November, 2001, James A. Reilly, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 627.
Journal of Military History, October, 2001, Efraim Karsh, review of The War for Palestine, p. 1158.
Journal of Palestine Studies, spring, 2002, Michael R. Fischbach, review of The War for Palestine, p. 112.
Journal of Peace Research, November, 2003, Are Hovdenak, review of The War for Palestine, p. 748.
Kadin/Woman 2000, December, 2002, Netice Yildiz, review of Outside In, p. 117.
Library Journal, May 1, 2001, Nader Entessar, review of The War for Palestine, p. 108.
Middle East, April, 2001, Fred Rhodes, review of The War for Palestine, p. 40.
Middle East Journal, summer, 1995, review of Village, Steppe and State: The Social Origins of Modern Jordan, p. 535; autumn, 2000, James L. Gelvin, review of Frontiers of State in the Late Ottoman Empire, p. 668; autumn, 2001, Brice Harris, review of The War for Palestine, p. 696.
Middle East Quarterly, winter, 2002, Efraim Karsh, review of The War for Palestine, p. 89.
Political Studies, June, 2002, Inger Marie Okkenhaug, review of The War for Palestine, p. 432.
Reference & Research Book News, November, 2002, review of Outside In, p. 43.
Tikkun, July, 2001, review of The War for Palestine, p. 81.
Times Literary Supplement, July 2, 1999, T.G.H. James, review of Agriculture in Egypt, p. 4.