Jil Jadid Conference

The Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures and the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Texas at Austin are happy to announce the 8th Annual Jil Jadid Conference in Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures, a graduate student conference to be held at the University of Texas at Austin, February 16–17, 2018.

Jil Jadid is a graduate student conference that aims to provide a forum for young scholars spread across a variety of disciplines to come together, share ideas and research, and discuss the future of their respective fields as they move forward in their careers and come to represent the eponymous new generation of scholars engaging with the Middle Eastern languages and its cultures. For the past seven Februaries, graduate students from a wide range of universities, both domestic and international, have assembled in Austin to set the tone for Middle Eastern studies in the twenty-first century. The ongoing positive feedback we have received from these past conferences prompts us to once again assemble with the same goal, uniting students from area studies, linguistics, comparative literature and other departments in order to facilitate a productive and interdisciplinary exchange of new ideas.

History and Goals of Jil Jadid

The Jil Jadid Conference was conceived by UT graduate student Alex Magidow, who saw a need for an academic conference that would provide a hospitable and cross-disciplinary atmosphere for graduate students working on Arabic Studies topics. The first iteration of the conference, coordinated by Alex, was held in 2011, and the conference has continued every year since then:

  • 2011 February 18–19, coordinated by Alex Magidow
  • 2012 February 24–25, coordinated by Anthony Edwards
  • 2013 February 22–23, coordinated by Mike Turner
  • 2014 February 21–22, coordinated by Tom Leddy-Cecere
  • 2015 February 27–28, coordinated by Valerie Montes and Claire Cooley
  • 2016 February 26–27, coordinated by Camille Bossut and Matthew Chovanec
  • 2017 February 24–25, coordinated by Navdeep Sokhey and Rawad Wehbe
Over the years, Jil Jadid’s original vision has organically expanded to include presenters and topics covering other Middle Eastern languages and literatures, both modern and ancient. February 16–17, 2018, will be the 8th iteration of Jil Jadid, coordinated by Radwa El Barouni and Estefania Valenzuela Mochon.


Key goals of the Jil Jadid conference:

  • To provide a forum for current graduate students in the fields of Middle Eastern languages and literatures to present their work and receive constructive feedback from their peers
  • To give the coming generation of scholars in these fields a chance to discuss the trajectories of their respective fields
  • To encourage work and ideas that benefit from cross-disciplinary perspectives
  • To  help current graduate students network with those of similar academic backgrounds and interests
  • To provide an environment that is more hospitable, welcoming, and relevant for graduate students than many traditional forums


The continuing success of the Jil Jadid conference would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors: 



Department of Middle Eastern Studies

Center for Middle Eastern Studies

Islamic Studies Initiative


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