This interdisciplinary graduate seminar uses scholarship, film, theory, and original sources to examine conundrums and questions that bedevil the region and study of the region. What is the “critical” in Critical Genealogies? How do we take the region or its parts seriously while not reproducing ahistorical and insular understandings structured by presentist, state, nationalist, or cultural logics?  How do we approach research methodologies, theories, and different kinds of sources as we address questions that emerge from our various disciplinary and interdisciplinary commitments? The seminar will include guest panels and opportunities for participants to discuss recent research with UNC and Duke faculty members in a range of disciplines. The course is required for the Duke-UNC Graduate Certificate in Middle East Studies, counts toward the Duke Graduate Certificate in Feminist Studies, and is open to all graduate students interested in study of the Middle East and North Africa region.