This is the story of the Lewis Affair at the American University of Beirut (then the Syrian Protestant College). When Professor Edwin Lewis mentioned Charles Darwin in the course of a commencement address, there were drastic ramifications, including faculty resignations, student suspensions, the first student protest in the Arab World, a subsequent drop in student enrollment, and the imposition of a Declaration of Principles on AUB faculty members. It represents a momentous event in the history of the American University of Beirut, and its reverberations were felt in intellectual circles throughout the Arab world. A foreword by former AUB president John Waterbury outlines how the issues underlying the Lewis Affair, including the controversy generated by Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, the struggle between conservative and liberal elements of academia, and the question of academic freedom, remain pertinent to this day.
In this informative book, Dean Daghir presents a well-documented history of agricultural education at AUB from the early part of the twentieth century to the current day. This account is preceded by an introductory chapter on the history of agriculture in the Levant, widely considered to be one of the areas where human beings first transformed from hunter-gatherers to farmers. This book is a rich testimony to the contributions of the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences (FAFS) and its graduates toward development in the Middle East region. The book will be of interest not only to former and current FAFS students, faculty, and staff members, but also to all those interested in AUB and its growth over the years.