Middle East scholar to discuss new book, ‘Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad,’ Oct. 22

MEDIA NOTE: This event will be webcast live.

David Ruth

Jeff Falk

Middle East scholar to discuss new book, ‘Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad,’ Oct. 22 

HOUSTON – (Oct. 18, 2012) – Widely respected Middle East author and Trinity University professor David Lesch will draw on his acquaintance with Syrian President Bashar Assad to discuss the leader’s transformation from bearer of hope to repressor of the Syrian revolution in the wake of the Arab Spring. Lesch will speak at Rice University’s Baker Institute at 6 p.m. Oct.22.

Who: Author and Trinity University Middle East history professor David Lesch.

What: “Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad.”

When: 6-7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 22.

Where: Kelly International Conference Facility, Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, 6100 Main St.

An experienced Middle East scholar and consultant, Lesch came to know Assad through a series of meetings between 2004 and 2009. In his book “Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad” (September 2012, Yale University Press), he explores Assad’s failed leadership and his regime’s violent response to the uprising of his people in the wake of the Arab Spring. Drawing on his firsthand experience with the president and members of the ruling elite as well as on extensive research, Lesch scrutinizes Assad’s turn toward repression and charts the steps taken toward the violence of 2011 and 2012.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Media who want to attend the event or schedule an interview with Lesch should contact Jeff Falk, associate director of national media relations at Rice, at jfalk@rice.edu or 713-348-6775.


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Founded in 1993, the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in Houston ranks among the top 20 university-affiliated think tanks globally and top 30 think tanks in the United States. As a premier nonpartisan think tank, the institute sponsors more than 20 programs that conduct research on domestic and foreign policy issues with the goal of bridging the gap between the theory and practice of public policy. The institute’s strong track record of achievement reflects the work of its endowed fellows and Rice University scholars. Learn more about the institute at www.bakerinstitute.org or on the institute’s blog, http://blogs.chron.com/bakerblog.

About Jeff Falk

Jeff Falk is associate director of national media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.