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Celebrating a Beacon of Knowledge, Wisdom, and Inspiration: A Birthday Tribute to Dr. Nur Koprulu – a Revolutionary Professor of Political Science and International Relations

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By Julius T. Jaesen II
Managing Editor
Democracy Watch
editordemocracywatch@gmail.com

Today, I have inked these few lines not just to celebrate a birthday but to honour a luminary, a rare scholar of the highest eminence, and a Revolutionary Professor of Political Science and International Relations – who specialises in Politics, Society, and Democratisation in the Middle East and North African Region (MENA Region).

Through her writings and teachings, Prof. Nur has not only shaped minds but has also reshaped perspectives, challenging conventional wisdom and delving deep into the intricacies of a region that holds both historical richness and contemporary complexities, far away from the Orientalist’s bunch of plastic words and linguistic gibberish negatively describing the Middle East as backward, brutish, primitive, barbaric, etcetera.

From the corridors of academia to the tumultuous streets of the Middle East and North Africa, Professor Nur’s impact resonates far and wide. Her relentless pursuit of truth, paired with an unyielding commitment to justice, has inspired countless students, scholars, and democracy activists alike.

She has been a beacon, illuminating the often shadowy corners of political intrigue, societal dynamics, and regional geopolitics. I remember before I departed from the Middle East, I sat in her office and we had an hour of dialogue on the mainstream theoretical approaches/perspectives in International Relations and their major assumptions.

Through rigorous research, insightful analyses, and unwavering dedication, Professor Nur has dismantled stereotypes, debunked myths, and provided a nuanced understanding of a region often misunderstood by the world at large.

Her classrooms were not just spaces for lectures but crucibles for critical thinking, debate, and transformation. Students didn’t just learn about the Middle East and North Africa; they lived it, breathed its complexities, and grappled with its contradictions under the professor’s guidance. And I’m fortunate to be one.

But beyond the confines of academia, Professor Nur’s influence reverberates in policy corridors, international fora, symposia, conferences, and grassroots movements. Her writings are not mere academic exercises but blueprints for change, advocating for peace, justice, and mutual understanding in a region rife with challenges yet brimming with potential.

For the last two months, I have been reading some of the dazzling articles she has authored and co-authored that have made their way among the grandeur writings published recently, including her PhD Dissertation authored in 2007 titled: CONSOLIDATION OF JORDANIAN NATIONAL IDENTITY: “RETHINKING INTERNAL UNREST AND EXTERNAL CHALLENGES IN SHAPING JORDANIAN IDENTITY AND FOREIGN POLICY”

On this special day, we salute not just the scholar but also the activist, the mentor, and the trailblazer in Prof. Dr. Nur. Her legacy transcends borders, languages, and ideologies. She has sown the seeds of knowledge, understanding, and empathy in countless hearts and minds, ensuring that the torch of enlightenment continues to burn brightly.

Prof. Dr. Nur Koprulu, as we celebrate your birthday, we also renew our commitment to the ideals you have championed: a world where dialogue triumphs over discord, where knowledge dispels ignorance, and where the rich tapestry of the Middle East and North African cultures, histories, and aspirations is celebrated and understood in all its complexity.

You are a Revolutionary Professor par excellence! May your journey continue to inspire, educate, and transform for generations to come. Once again, happy birthday, our distinguished scholar professor.

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