Dr. Dylan Baun

Associate Professor, History Middle East & Islamic World


1310 Ben Graves Drive
Morton Hall
Room 223
Huntsville, AL 35899
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Dylan Baun was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is a lover of all history. His specific interest in the Middle East began when he visited Egypt as an impressionable undergraduate history major at Wittenberg University and continued as he studied Arabic and conducted archival research in Lebanon during his Ph.D. training at the University of Arizona.

Dylan is a historian of the modern Middle East with a focus on youth and young people in 20th century Lebanon and Palestine. His research focuses on young men and women in this era and region, especially the identities they forge through their engagement in political organizations, social movements, protests, revolutions, and wars. Dylan's first book, Winning Lebanon: Youth Politics, Populism, and the Production of Sectarian Violence, 1920-1958 (Cambridge University Press, 2021) is a history of multiple youth organizations and parties across the French colonial and early independence eras, culminating in the 1958 War. He is currently working on a second book project, which is a biography of a young Lebanese leftist from the Global 1960s to the Lebanese Civil War of the 1970s.

Dylan brings these specific interests into the classroom, where he asks students to consider how non-elites and their actions shape specific historical phenomena, whether a civil war or a literary movement. At the same time, his students explore how given events and trends shape the lives of these people as they experience them. Hence, Dylan challenges his students to strike this balance, with people as makers of historical events, but also products of these events. He finds this approach important for all historical inquiry, but especially in the case of the Middle East, whereby people have been written out of grand historical narratives, contemporary media reports, and foreign policy as if they were merely victims or pawns.

In Dylan’s classes, students learn about the lives of children, women, and men in Middle Eastern, Islamic, and World history. Throughout any given semester, Dylan and his students practice understanding them, writing about them, and relating to them.

Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D., University of Arizona, 2015
  • M.A., University of Arizona, 2010
  • B.A., Wittenberg University, 2008


  • Modern Middle East and Islamic World
  • Youth and young people
  • Popular politics and social movements

Recent Publications

  • Winning Lebanon: Youth Politics, Populism, and the Production of Sectarian Violence, 1920-1958. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2021. -Winner of 2022 SERMEISS Book Prize.

  • “Spaces and Places,” co-authored chapter with Carla Pascoe Leahy in A Cultural History of Youth in the Modern Age, edited by Simon Sleight and Kristen Alexander. London: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (January 2023).

  • “Claiming an Individual:  Party, Family, and the Politics of Memorialization in the Lebanese Civil War.” Middle East Critique vol. 30, no. 4 (2021).

  • “Celebrating Holidays and Instilling Values: Religion, Nationalism, and Youth Organization in Twentieth Century Youth Culture,” chapter in Oxford Handbook of the History of Youth Culture, edited by James Marten. Oxford University Press (2021).

  • "Populism and war-making: Constructing the people and the enemy during the early Lebanese Civil War era," 146-157. In Mapping Populism: Approaches and Methods, edited by Majia Nadesan and Amit Ron. New York: Routledge, 2020.

  • Lebanon's Youth Clubs and the 1936 Summer Olympics: Mobilizing Sports, Challenging Imperialism and Launching a National Project." The International Journal of the History of Sport vol. 34, no. 13 (2018): 1347-65. -Winner of 2019 SERMEISS Article/Book Chapter Prize.