Heritage and Theft in Syria and Iraq

15 Jun 2016

Regular hours

11:00 – 18:00

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The Mosaic Rooms

England, United Kingdom


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  • Earls Court Tube
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Join experts Benjamin Isakhan, Neil Brodie and Toby Dodge as they discuss the destruction of cultural heritage and the looting and illicit trade of objects from Iraq and Syria.


The talk will reflect on the use of both to further political aims and ideologies, in particular reference to ISIS and other groups involved, as well as give context to the contemporary conflicts in both countries, which have lead to recent devastation.

Benjamin Isakhan is Associate Professor of Politics and Policy Studies and Chief Investigator on the funded project ‘Heritage Destruction in Iraq and Syria’ at Deakin University, Australia. Ben is a member of the Middle East Studies Forum in the Alfred Deakin Institute and an Adjunct Senior Research Associate, Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. He is the author of Democracy in Iraq: History, Politics, Discourse (Routledge, 2012) and the editor of six books including, most recently, The Legacy of Iraq: From the 2003 War to the ‘Islamic State’ (Edinburgh University Press, 2016 [2015]).

Neil Brodie has held positions at the British School at Athens, the University of Cambridge, Stanford University, and the University of Glasgow. He has spent twenty years researching the illicit trade in antiquities and other cultural objects and has published widely on the subject. His work is available here:

Toby Dodge is the Kuwait Professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is also a professor in the International Relations Department and the Director of the Middle East Centre at LSE. His main areas of research include the politics of intervention, the evolution of the Iraqi state and state-society dynamics and political identities in Iraq. His publications include Inventing Iraq: The failure of nation building and a history denied (2003), Iraq’s Future: The Aftermath of Regime Change (2005), Iraq: From War to a New Authoritarianism (2013).


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