Christopher S. Rose is a postdoctoral fellow with the Institute for Historical Studies at the University of Texas at Austin (UT) for the 2019-20 year. He earned his doctorate in History from UT in May 2019.
Chris has taught as an adjunct instructor in the School of Behavioral and Social Sciences at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas, and as an Assistant Instructor for the Department of Middle Eastern Studies at UT.
Chris studies the early modern Arab world, focusing on Egypt. His dissertation, “On the Home Front: Food, Medicine, and Disease in World War I Egypt” examines the impact of the war on the Egyptian civilian population.
On the Home Front analyzes how price control systems intended to ensure an adequate supply of food for the population during the war were neutralized by requisitions of labor and foodstuffs, a situation that resulted in inflation, food shortages, and starvation among civilians. Using demographic and statistical data, he argues that the resultant malnutrition lead to the rapid spread of disease throughout the country, culminating in the influenza pandemic of 1918 which killed over one percent of the population. His work contextualizes civilian suffering as a “social event,” contending that economic and political consequences of health and disease must be considered as factors in the history of post-war Egypt, notably with regard to the nationalist uprising in the spring of 1919.
His other interests include the formative period of Islam from Muhammad until the rise of the Umayyads; the history and development of Fustat/Cairo; Islamic North Africa and Spain (al-Andalus); and the spread of cultural traits outward from the Middle East through trade networks (Silk Route, Mediterranean, Atlantic).
He has taught surveys covering most of the history of the Middle East—from the rise of Islam to the present day—in addition to an introductory survey for the Global Studies program at St. Edward’s, and a course on Modern Egypt using literature in translation as the primary course texts. He also designed and taught a comparative global course on terrorism and extremism for St. Edward’s, and is currently developing a course “World War I: The Colonial Experience” for the spring 2020 semester at UT.
In his relatively short teaching career, he has mentored students who have received a variety of accolades and awards, including Boren and Fulbright fellowships. He is also writing a popular series of blog posts called the Grad School Survival Guide.
Chris also has significant experience in educator training, particularly working with world history and world geography educators. During his lengthy tenure as Outreach Director at UT’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies (2000-2016), Chris conducted numerous professional development sessions for educators, co-wrote several curriculum units for K-12 classrooms, and took numerous groups of educators to the Middle East. He left in December 2016 to focus on completing his dissertation.
He has extensive experience traveling in the Middle East, including Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Morocco, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, Uzbekistan and the West Bank, and has done archival work in the UK, the US, and Switzerland. He speaks Egyptian Arabic, Modern Standard Arabic, and Spanish, and reads French and Portuguese.
When not nerding out in archives and contemplating the power implications of knowledge production, he enjoys food, wine, photography, and scratching cats behind the ears.