Reading the Middle East with Gilles Kepel

Reading the Middle East with Gilles Kepel

On “Reading the Middle East with Gilles Kepel,” the latest Al-Monitor podcast, renowned French scholar Gilles Kepel interviews the ground-breaking authors and thought leaders who are both shaping and explaining the complex trends in the Middle East and Islamic world. Kepel, one of Europe's leading experts on Islamism, the Middle East and North Africa, is a professor at the Institute of Political Studies, Paris (Sciences Po). His numerous books — which include "Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam," "The War for Muslim Minds: Islam and the West," "Beyond Terror and Martyrdom: The Future of the Middle East," and "The Prophet and the Pandemic" — have been translated into seventeen languages.


August 1, 2022 24 mins

Zineb Mekouar was born in Casablanca. She studied at the French international school Lycée Lyautey and later graduated from Science Po and HEC Paris before launching her career in strategic consulting, serving in the campaign of French President Emmanuel Macron. Her debut novel “La Poule et son Cumin” (The Hen and its Cumin) tells the story of two radically opposed young Moroccan women and highlights the social and politic...

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Daniel Yergin, Vice Chairman of S&P Global, is an authority on energy, international politics and economics. Attending Yale University and receiving his Ph.D. from Cambridge University, Yergin in 1983 founded Cambridge Energy Associates. He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992 for his work “The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money & Power.” His latest book, “The New Map: Energy, Climate, and the Clash of Nations” was dub...

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Israeli-French filmmaker Amos Gitai is internationally known for documentaries and feature films about the Middle East and broader Arab-Israeli conflict. As an architecture student in the 1970s, Gitai was wounded during the Yom Kippur War. The experience encouraged him to switch careers and begin making films. He has since created over 90 works of art including feature and short films, documentaries and theater performance...

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Born in Istanbul, Orhan Pamuk rose to become one of Turkey’s most prominent novelists. His works have sold over 11 million copies worldwide and have been translated into sixty-three languages. In 2006, Pamuk was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, becoming Turkey’s first-ever Nobel laureate. His latest novel “Veba Geceleri” (“The Nights of the Plague”) examines the psychology of a pandemic and bridging feelings of lonel...

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Speaking to Gilles Kepel from the Arab World Institute in Paris, renowned French architect Jean Nouvel talks about his experience designing world-famous buildings throughout the Middle East — including in Qatar, the UAE and Saudi Arabia — as well as adapting Arabian architectural elements into Parisian projects under the principle that “all architecture is local.”

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Maria Ressa, co-founder, president and CEO of Rappler, the top digital news site leading the fight for press freedom in the Philippines, discusses the challenges to independent journalists, especially women, in southeast Asia, the Middle East and worldwide; the impact of hi tech social media companies in stifling free media; her experiences covering Abu Sayyaf, and how terrorist organizations exploited social media platfor...

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HRH Prince Turki Al Faisal Al Saud, who served as head of Saudi Arabia's General Intelligence Directorate from 1979-2001, discusses his book, The Afghanistan File, reflecting on the early support for the Mujahideen against the Soviet occupation, the rise to power of the Taliban and Al-Qaeda and their threats to the kingdom and the West, and his meetings with Osama bin Laden.

King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic S...

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Emirati columnist, researcher and founder of the Barjeel Art Foundation Sultan Sooud al-Qassemi speaks with Gilles about his book, Building Sharjah, co-edited with Todd Reisz, which explores how the discovery of oil in Sharjah in the 1970s propelled the Emirati city onto the world stage, as well as the many local, Arab and Persian influences on the art and architecture of the emirate. 


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Former US ambassador to Israel, assistant secretary of state for Near East Affairs, special assistant to President Clinton and special envoy under President Obama for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations Martin Indyk speaks on his latest book, Master of The Game: Henry Kissinger and the Art of Middle East Diplomacy, which is based on hours of conversations with the storied American diplomat and takes a deep dive into arch...

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Renowned Egyptian novelist Alaa Al Aswany, author of the award winning The Yacoubian Building, discusses his experience during the Egyptian revolution and his book, The Republic of False Truths, which was released in English this year. “The Egyptians I lived with in Tahrir Square have nothing to do with the Egyptians I used to live with before the revolution," Aswany tells Gilles Kepel. "They are probab...

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September 27, 2021 1 min

On “Reading the Middle East with Gilles Kepel,” the latest Al-Monitor podcast, renowned French scholar Gilles Kepel interviews the ground-breaking authors and thought leaders who are both shaping and explaining the complex trends in the Middle East and Islamic world.

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