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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Middle Eastern Studies
Leverhulme Early Career Fellow
Email address: 
Fellow of: 
King's College
Edward Zychowicz-Coghill

Growing up in the now infamous Barnard Castle in the north-east of England, I attended my local comprehensive before studying for a BA in History at Oxford. I then spent time in Syria and Cairo before doing graduate study in Chicago, Princeton, and Oxford, where I completed my doctorate in 2017. I have been a postdoctoral researcher in Cambridge since then.

Teaching responsibilities: 

MES 6: Introduction to the History and Culture of the Middle East

MES 17: The Formation of Islam

MES 37: Islamic Cities and Muslim Kings? Monarchy, Legitimacy and Urbanism in the Medieval and Early Modern Islamic World

Research interests: 

My research focuses on the remaking of the Middle East in the centuries after the Islamic conquests, using Arabic, Greek and Syriac sources.

My doctoral work traced the development of the earliest traditions of Arabic historical writing, investigating the social and political contexts which produced these first Arabic histories, the hegemonic ideas they disseminated, and the strategies of authorship early Arabic historians used to shape readers’ responses to their texts.

Since then I have written about ethnic and geographical discourses in Islamic representations of antiquity, the Arabic reception of late antique Iranian history-writing, and foundation narratives of the first Islamic cities.

My latest research project is into how attitudes to wealth, inequality and the social obligations they inspire were used to mark and maintain social distinctions in early Islamic society.