Jens Hanssen

Associate Professor

On Leave

July 01, 2023 to June 30, 2026
Near & Middle Eastern Civilization, 4 Bancroft Avenue, Room 317



Graduate: Geography

Fields of Study

Areas of Interest

Ottoman and Arab history, Mediterranean and urban studies, cultural and intellectual history, nationalism, comparative settler colonialism, politics of archaeology in the Middle East, international relations, Israel-Palestine.


Jens Hanssen is Associate Professor of Arab Civilization, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean history in the departments of Historical Studies (UTM), History and Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations. In the St. George History Department he teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on settler colonialism in Palestine; International Relations, counter-insurgency and decolonization in the Middle East; and urban colonialism in the modern Mediterranean. His book publications include Fin de Siècle Beirut (Oxford, 2005),  a co-edited volume on Arab Provincial Capitals in the Late Ottoman Empire (Beirut, 2002) and a co-authored book on History, Space and Social Conflict in Beirut (2005/2016). 

He has published in The New Cambridge History of Islam (2010), the International Journal of Middle East Studies (2011) and The Fin de Siècle World (2015). He is co-editing the OUP Handbook of Contemporary Middle Eastern and North African History, two volumes on Arabic Thought Beyond the Liberal Age with CUP, and finishing an English translation of “The Clarion of Syria”, a key text in 19th-century Arab intellectual history. He is currently writing a book under contract with OUP on The Middle East at the Fin de Siècle which explores how the fast-paced developments at the turn of the 19th-century affected cultural production on all sides of the Mediterranean Sea. He also holds a SSHRC Insight Grant (2014-2018) on German-Jewish Echoes in 20th Arab Thought which has yielded two articles so far: “Kafka and Arabs” (Critical Inquiry, 2012), and “Translating Revolution: Hannah Arendt and Arab Political Culture”.