Pierre M. Atlas, Ph.D., professor of political science, is the director of The Richard G. Lugar Franciscan Center for Global Studies and writes a monthly opinion column for The Indianapolis Star (second Thursday of the month). He obtained his Ph.D. in political science from Rutgers University in 2000 and holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees in political science from the University of Arizona and the University of Toronto, respectively. A native of Texas, Atlas grew up in California; he served in the US Army in the 1980's, where he studied Arabic. He teaches a variety of classes at Marian University including Introduction to American politics, American Foreign Policy, Politics of the Middle East, Politics of the Global Economy, Civil Wars and Ethnic Conflicts, and GLS 101 Global Perspectives. He organizes and leads the Lugar Fellow Global Studies spring break trip to Washington, DC.
A comparative political scientist who has long specialized in Middle East politics, Dr. Atlas is now researching and writing on the political legacy of the North American frontier and serves as the Canadian Studies section coordinator for the Western Social Science Association. Dr. Atlas’ most recent publications include “Constructing and Enforcing the ‘Medicine Line’: A Comparative Analysis of Indian Policy on the North American Frontier,” in The American Review of Canadian Studies (2016) and “US Foreign Policy and the Arab Spring: Balancing Values and Interests,” in Digest of Middle East Studies (2012). He has presented conference papers on frontier history, mythology and gun culture, as well as various topics related to Middle East politics. He has written articles, book reviews, co-authored a book chapter on Israeli politics and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and has authored entries for the Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa and the Encyclopedia of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Dr. Atlas is also co-author of an article in the Journal of Peace Research on civil war in Sudan, Zimbabwe, Chad, and Lebanon.