Assistant Professor of History
Wednesday 1-3 pm or by appointment.
Adam Mestyan is a historian of the modern Arab world, whose research and teaching focus on the global social history of nation-state building, nationalism, and sovereignty in the region from the late Ottoman period until today. He was a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows, and recipient of numerous grants and fellowships.
Currently, he is working on his second monograph, Modern Arab Kingship, an international history of Arab monarchies and Western imperialism from the late nineteenth century until the 1950s in the former Ottoman territories. In addition, he is preparing for his next project about law, nature, and inequality in twentieth-century Arab countries. His first monograph, Arab Patriotism: The Ideology and Culture of Power in Late Ottoman Egypt (Princeton University Press, 2017), explores, through an archive-based institutional history, how the Ottoman ruling elite of Egypt instrumentalized Arabic and European works to legitimize their power between the 1840s and the 1890s. The book also includes a microhistory of the Cairo Opera House.
He is committed to create free and online tools for scholarship and the public. He supervises an online bibliography project on Arabic periodicals: Jara'id: A Chronology of Nineteenth-Century Periodicals in Arabic; co-directs a digital humanities project on the urban history of Cairo; and another digital humanities project on Islamic book history.
He welcomes research students interested in any aspect of this region's modern history in the global context who wish to carry out research based on primary sources in the languages of the region.
Mestyan, Adam. “Daniel A. Stolz. The Lighthouse and the Observatory: Islam, Science, and Empire in Late Ottoman Egypt. (Science in History.) xiv + 316 pp., figs., tables, bibl., index. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018. £75 (cloth). ISBN 9781107196339.” Isis. University of Chicago Press, September 2019. https://doi.org/10.1086/704659. Full Text
Mestyan, Adam. “Matthew Ellis, Desert Borderland: The Making of Modern Egypt and Libya (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2018). Pp. 280. $65.00 cloth. ISBN: 9781503605008.” International Journal of Middle East Studies. Cambridge University Press (CUP), May 2019. https://doi.org/10.1017/s0020743819000138. Full Text
Mestyan, A. “Ali Yaycioglu, Partners of the Empire: The Crisis of the Ottoman Order in the Age of Revolutions (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2016).” The Hungarian Historical Review, 2017. Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Review of "Liat Kozma: Policing Egyptian Women - Sex, Law, and Medicine in Khedivial Egypt".” British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 2013.
Mestyan, Adam. “The Muslim Bourgeoisie and Philanthropy in the Late Ottoman Empire.” In The Global Bourgeoisie The Rise of the Middle Classes in the Age of Empire, edited by Christian DeJung, Jurgen Osterhammel, and David Motadel, 207–28. Princeton University Press, 2019.
Mestyan, Adam. ““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. BRILL, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004323353_010. Full Text 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, 539–64. Vienna: Hollitzer, 2014. 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.
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.
Mestyan, A. “Domestic Sovereignty, A'yan Developmentalism, and Global Microhistory in Modern Egypt.” Comparative Studies in Society and History 60, no. 2 (April 1, 2018): 415–45. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0010417518000105. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Upgrade?: Power and sound during Ramadan and ‘Id al-fitr in the nineteenth-century Ottoman Arab provinces.” Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East 37, no. 2 (January 1, 2017): 262–79. https://doi.org/10.1215/1089201x-4132893. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A., and M. Volait. “Affairisme dynastique et dandysme au Caire vers 1900: Le Club des Princes et la formation d’un quartier du divertissement rue ʿImād al-Dīn.” Annales Islamologiques 50 (2016): 55–106. Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Ignác Goldziher's report on the books brought from the orient for the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.” Journal of Semitic Studies 60, no. 2 (January 1, 2015): 443–80. https://doi.org/10.1093/jss/fgv008. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Materials for a history of Hungarian academic orientalism: The case of Gyula Germanus.” Welt Des Islams 54, no. 1 (January 1, 2014): 4–33. https://doi.org/10.1163/15700607-00541p02. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Arabic theater in early khedivial culture, 1868-72: James Sanua revisited.” International Journal of Middle East Studies 46, no. 1 (January 1, 2014): 117–37. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0020743813001311. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, A. “Erratum: Power and music in Cairo: Azbakiyya (Urban History (2013)).” Urban History 40, no. 4 (November 1, 2013): 705. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0963926813000229. Full Text Open Access Copy
Mestyan, Adam. “ARABIC LEXICOGRAPHY AND EUROPEAN AESTHETICS: THE ORIGIN OF FANN.” Muqarnas Online 28, no. 1 (2011): 69–100. https://doi.org/10.1163/22118993-90000174. Full Text Open Access Copy