Adam Mestyan

Assistant Professor of History

External address: 
Office 316; 114 Campus Drive, Carr Building (east Campus), Durham, NC 27708
Internal office address: 
Box 90719, Durham, NC 27708
Phone: 
(919) 684-2343
Office hours: 

Wednesday 4-5 pm or by appointment.

Overview

Adam Mestyan is a historian of the modern Middle East. His first monograph Arab Patriotism - The Ideology and Culture of Power in Late Ottoman Egypt (Princeton University Press, 2017; order it on Amazon) presents the essential backstory about the birth of nationalism in Egypt and the Ottoman Empire. Previously he taught at Oxford University and held fellowships at Harvard University and at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin.
At the moment, Mestyan works on three major publication projects in addition to articles. The first is entitled Praise and Books in Nineteenth-Century Egypt and it is the translation and edition of a hitherto unknown Arabic manuscript about the ancient history of Egypt. Based on archival and other materials, the introduction to this translation reconstructs the world of Muslim sheikhs in the age of printing and fundamentally changes our perception of the origins of public sphere in the Middle East. This book will be published by IFAO.

Second, the next book project is Cosmopolitanism and Empire – Musical Theater in the Eastern Mediterranean. The key goal of the book is to explore the transimperial, indeed, transcontinental entertainment networks and entanglements that shaped and were shaped by the lives and adventures of Ottoman Armenian, Turkish, and Arab impresarios and troupes. It  breaks up and challenges purely national narratives of art and theater histories, making the book a major statement for the cosmopolitan construction of local cultures.

Finally, Modern Arab Kingship is a study in the history and representation of Arab sovereignty. How did nationalism and Islam interact in monarchical structures? Through the comparison of six Arab monarchies in the interwar period, the book explores the Arabic ideology and imagination of nation-states as monarchical forms under colonial rule.

He has been deeply interested in the theory and practice of archives and the origins of the Arabic public sphere. He also supervises a digital humanities project: Jara'id - A Chronology of Nineteenth-Century Periodicals in Arabic.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Eotvos Lorand University (Hungary) 2011

  • Ph.D., Central European University (Hungary) 2011

  • M.A., Central European University (Hungary) 2007

  • M.A., Eotvos Lorand University (Hungary) 2005

  • M.A., Eotvos Lorand University (Hungary) 2004

Mestyan, A. Arab Patriotism (In preparation). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2017. (Monograph)

Mestyan, A. "Review of "Liat Kozma: Policing Egyptian Women - Sex, Law, and Medicine in Khedivial Egypt"." British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies (2013).

Mestyan, A. "“I Have To Disguise Myself”: Orientalism, Gyula Germanus, and pilgrimage as cultural capital, 1935–1965." In The Hajj and Europe in the Age of Empire,217-239. Leiden: Brill, November 17, 2016. (Essay) Open Access Copy

Mestyan, A. "Sound, Military Music, and Opera in Egypt during the Rule of Mehmet Ali Pasha (r.1805-1848)." In Ottoman Empire and European Theatre Vol. II – The Time of Joseph Haydn. From Sultan Mahmud I to Mahmud II (r.1730-1839),edited by M Hüttler and H Weidinger,539-564. Vienna: Hollitzer, 2014. (Essay) Open Access Copy

Mestyan, A. "Sound, Military Music, and Opera in Egypt during the Rule of Mehmet Ali Pasha (r.1805-1848)." In Ottoman Empire and European Theatre Vol. II – The Time of Joseph Haydn. From Sultan Mahmud I to Mahmud II (r.1730-1839),edited by M Hüttler and H Weidinger. Vienna: Hollitzer, 2014. (Essay)

Mestyan, A. "Cultural Policy in the Late Ottoman Empire? The Palace and the Public Theatres in Nineteenth-Century Istanbul." In Kulturpolitik und Theatre - Die kontinentalen Imperien in Europa im Vergleich. Oldenburg: Böhlau, 2012. (Essay)

Mestyan, A, and Grallert, T. "Project Jara'id." (2012).