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R. Thomas Bobal <email@example.com>
|List Affiliations:||Reviewer for H-War
|Reviews:||Myths and Realities?
|Interests:||African American History / Studies
Cultural History / Studies
Diplomacy and International Relations
Ethnic History / Studies
Middle East History / Studies
Nationalism History / Studies
Religious Studies and Theology
I am an Assistant Professor of History at SUNY Adirondack. I earned my PhD in American history in 2011. My areas of focus include the histories of race, religion, and America and the World. My research interrogates the nexus between these fields. My current manuscript, America's Middle East: Race, Religion, Nationalism and the Transformation of the Middle East, 1947-1960, examines developments within the Middle East at the midpoint of the twentieth century. It establishes that American racial and religious presumptions collaborated with national security concerns to precipitate American intervention into the region. Specifically, it demonstrates that these forces prompted American policymakers to labor to contain Middle Eastern nationalism and to lavish support on those in the region who argued for strong bonds between Mosque and State. The manuscript also utilized Middle Eastern sources to affirm that Middle Eastern historical developments, particularly the emergence of nationalism and of Political Islam, both elicited American attention and channeled U.S. power through discrete pathways. The University Press of Kentucky has requested the complete manuscript for review.
In the past my research has appeared in The International History Review. My article "‘A Puppet, Even Though He Probably Doesn’t Know So:’ Racial Identity and the Eisenhower Administration’s Encounter with Gamal Abdel Nasser and the Arab Nationalist Movement" elucidated how American racialized identity beliefs guided U.S. foreign policy towards Egypt during the 1950s. I have also written book reviews for H-War and the Canadian Journal of History.
I am currently embarking upon two new projects. The first is an article which will examine the Carter administration's reaction to the Islamic revival of the 1970s. That project is currently in the drafting stage. I am also conduction research for a larger project which will examine the American reaction to this Islamic revival in the 1970s and 1980s.
Down the road I also hope to complete a project which will examine American perceptions of the Middle East and its people from 1776 to present and the interrelation of those perceptions to power discourses, both domestic and international.