ANTH-152: Middle Eastern Peoples and Cultures

Liberal Arts
Social Sciences
Academic Level
Course Subject
Course Number
Course Title
Middle Eastern Peoples and Cultures
Credit Hours
Instructor Contact Hours Per Semester
47.00 (for 15-week classes)
Student Contact Hours Per Semester
47.00 (for 15-week classes)
Grading Method
Eligible to take ENG courses at HFC
Catalog Course Description

Introduces the various ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups as well as cultures of the Middle East with an emphasis on both the Arabs and Islam as two of the most powerful social forces to have shaped the history and culture of the region. Explores Orientalism and western perceptions of the Middle East, colonialism. globalization and identity, nationalism, and other popular ideological currents that continue to influence the region and its peoples. Also examines the history and experiences of Arabs in the United States with a special focus on the large Arab-American community in Dearborn, Michigan.

Goals, Topics, and Objectives

Core Course Topics
  1. Geographic, topographic, and political description of the Middle East
  2. Definition of the Muslim World
  3. Definition of the Arab World
  4. Identification of the major ethnic, religious, and linguistic subgroups
  5. Overview of Islamic history
  6. Similarities and differences between Islam and Christianity (and Judaism)
  7. Middle Eastern society and culture
    1. Social traits and cultural values
    2. Rites of passage
    3. Family
    4. Child rearing practices
    5. Women and gender issues
    6. Case studies
  8. Arab Americans
    1. History (national)
    2. Demographic distribution (national)
    3. Metro Detroit history and demographics
    4. Case studies
Core Course Learning Objectives (Separated)
  1. Define/Describe the Middle East region.
  2. Distinguish the terms “Arab” and “Muslim.”
  3. Describe the major tenets of Islam.
  4. Compare and Contrast the relationship of Islam to Christianity and Judaism.
  5. Identify at least two subgroups of Muslims.
  6. Explain how Middle Easterners see the role of women in society.
  7. Identify at least two non-Muslim communities in the Middle East.
  8. Describe several misconceptions and/or stereotypes of Middle Eastern society.
  9. Describe the major sub-groups comprising the Arab-American community.
  10. Describe some of the main divisions of Arab Detroit.
  11. Using what you have learned in the course about Middle Eastern cultures
    a) analyze why dating would be frowned on by Arab Americans living in the United States or
    b) infer the various reasons why Muslim American women might wear a headscarf or related item of clothing.

Assessment and Requirements

Assessment of Academic Achievement

Assessment of academic achievement may include (but is not limited to) exams, quizzes, homework, and projects.


General Education Categories
  • Social Sciences
Institutional Outcomes
  • Civil Society and Culture - U.S. and Global
MTA Categories
  • Category 4: Social Sciences
Satisfies Wellness Requirement

Approval Dates

Effective Term
Winter 2022
ILT Approval Date
AALC Approval Date
Curriculum Committee Approval Date
Review Semester
Winter 2022