Benjamin James Reilly

Benjamin James Reilly

Teaching Professor of History

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Benjamin Reilly has been an associate teaching professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s Qatar campus since 2004. His published work encompasses an unusual variety of topics, including rail-building in Southern Florida, political discourse in revolutionary France and malarial fevers in Rome. Most recently, however, he has turned to the environmental history of the Arabian Peninsula, with a focus on human-landscape interactions and the complex interplay of social systems, human genetics, and disease.


Ph.D., Early Modern European history, University of Pittsburgh

Ph.D. Certificate, Cultural Studies, University of Pittsburgh

M.A., European History, University of Pittsburgh

B.A., History, New College of the University of South Florida

Area Of Expertise

World History

Environmental History

Natural Disasters

Arabian Peninsula




Slavery, Agriculture, and Malaria in the Arabian Peninsula. Ohio University Press, November 2015.

Man and Disaster: Case Studies in Nature, Society, and Catastrophe. McFarland Press, April 2009.

Tropical Surge: Ambition and Disaster on the Edge of America, 1831-1935. Sarasota, Florida: Pineapple Press, 2005.


Articles and Book Chapters

“A Well-Intentioned Failure: British Antislavery Measures and the Arabian Peninsula, 1820-1940.” Journal of Arabian Studies [Forthcoming, December 2015].

“Arabian Travellers, 1800-1950: An Analytical Bibliography.” British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 2015.

“Mutawalladeen and Malaria: African Slavery in Arabian Wadis.” Journal of Social History, Vol. 47, No. 4 (2014), p. 1-19.

“Revisiting Consanguineous Marriage in the Greater Middle East: Milk, Blood, and Bedouins.” American Anthropologist, Vol. 115, No. 3 (2013), pp. 374-387.

“Mapping Student Learning: Course Assessment using Concept Maps in a World History Survey Course.” World History Connections, Vol. 10, No. 2 (2013).

“Revisiting Bedouin Desert Adaptations: Lactase Persistence as a Factor in Arabian Peninsula History.” Journal of Arabian Studies, Vol. 2, No. 2 (2012), pp. 93-107.

“Protestants, Malaria, and Google.” Environmental History, Vol. 16, No. 2 (2011), pp. 312-321.

“Liberal Education in the Middle East.” In Higher Education and the Middle East: Serving the Knowledge-based Economy, The Middle East Institute, (Jul., 2010), pp. 27-30.

“Globalizing the Classroom: Lessons Learned from EC Teleclasses,” The Observatory for Borderless Higher Education, May 2010.

“Digital Encounters: Using Information Technology in an Overseas Branch Campus” The History Teacher, August 2008.

“Rhetoric and Ambition: the Impolitic Foreign Policy of Jean-Pierre Brissot” In Gregory Fremont-Barnes ed., Encyclopedia of the Age of Political Revolutions and New Ideologies. Greenwood Press, 2007.

“Ideology on Trial: Testing a Theory of Revolutionary Political Culture.” French History Vol. 19, No. 1 (March 2005), pp. 28-47.

“Polling the Opinions: A Re-Examination of Mountain, Plain, and Gironde in the National Convention.” Social Science History Journal, Vol. 28, No. 1 (Feb 2004), pp. 53-74.

“‘Manichean Americans’: Examining a Theory of American Particularism in the Age of the French Revolution.” Proceedings of the Consortium of Revolutionary Europe (2001), pp. 229-237.


University Service

  • Co-Chair of the Qatar Faculty Forum lecture series, 2008-Present
  • History Minor Faculty Advisor, Fall 2011-Present
  • Faculty Advisor, 5-Minute Info Club, 2014-present
  • Faculty Advisor, Student Gaming Club, Fall 2010-Present
  • Invited Member of EC Teaching and Learning Committee, Fall 2014-Present
  • Academic Review Board member, 2006-Present
  • Member of CMUQ Anti-Cheating Task Force, Spring 2015
  • Member of CMUQ Summer Symposium Committee, Fall 2012
  • Member of CMUQ Intercampus Communication Committee, Fall 2012
  • Member of CMUQ Occasional Paper Series Committee, 2009-2010
  • Member of CMUQ First Year Experience Committee, 2007-2008
  • Member of CMUQ Assessment Committee, 2006-2009
  • Convener of Liberal Arts and Sciences Faculty Group at CMUQ, 2005-2009
  • Member of CMUQ Housing Committee, 2004


  • Advisory work for the AP European History test, Fall 2013
  • Advisory work for the AP World History test, Spring 2012
  • Advisor for Urbacon Trading and Contracting Group, Mall of Qatar Project, Spring 2012

Consultant for Habib University (Kurachi, Pakistan), 2009-Present. In this capacity, I drafted their 8-course General Education core sequence, advised on their Academic, Student Affairs, and Facilities Committees, served as a member of the Initial Faculty Hiring Committee, and have acted as point person in Education

Courses Taught

  • Comparative Slavery
  • Arabian Peninsula Environmental History
  • World History/Global Histories
  • 18th Century European History
  • US-Arab Encounters
  • Europe and the Islamic World
  • Disastrous Encounters (natural disasters in human history)
  • Inward Odyssey (travelogues as historical sources)
  • US Social History
  • Privilege, Responsibility, and Community (guest lectures)
  • Western Civ I (3000 BC-1600 AD)
  • Western Civ II (1600-present)
  • United States I (1492-1865)
  • SAT, GMAT, GRE & LSAT Test Prep