Scott Lucas

Scott C. Lucas, Acting Director and Associate Professor, School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies, University of Arizona

Wednesday, October 18, 2023,


ASA Koffler Great Room & zoom





The eight-year civil war in Yemen has created what has been called the world’s worst man-made humanitarian crisis. Hundreds of thousands of Yemenis have been killed and some four million people displaced. According to the United Nations, 21.6 million people in the country require humanitarian assistance and 80 percent of the population struggles to put food on the table.   How did this happen?  What are the elements that make it so difficult to solve?

Dr. Lucas will introduce and explain the main religious orientations in Yemen: the Zaydi Shi’ites of the north; the traditionalist Sunnis in most of the country; and the pockets of Salafi and militant extremists in the south.  It will highlight Yemen’s diverse natural landscapes and the politics behind the current civil war that continues to afflict its people.

Scott Lucas has been an assistant and associate professor of Islamic Studies at the UA since 2004. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago, where he specialized in the study of early Sunni hadith criticism.  He has published numerous articles and chapters on Sunni hadith, law, and Qur’an commentaries.  In 2017, his two-volume translation of excerpts from the famous Qur’an commentary by al-Tabari (d. 923) was published.  Since then, his research has focused on the Zaydi intellectual tradition in Yemen, which has required the study of Arabic manuscripts.  He studied Arabic and Islam in Yemen in 1994 and during the 1995-96 academic year.

Compiled and edited by Rosemary Brown

You can connect to Zoom either by using the following URL: or by opening a browser to and typing in Meeting ID: 954 5651 1620 and Passcode: 85747 

Oct. 18: “Inside Yemen: Religion and Politics in Southwest Arabia”