The rationale for the Nahda Project is to underscore, at a time of extreme sectarian pressures on and in the Middle East, the extraordinary history of coexistence in the Levant that involved different Muslim, Christian and Jewish communities and individuals; to recover, reconstruct and document the lived experiences, trajectories and works of these individuals; to push back against orientalist, Islamist and minoritarian narratives that obscure the degree to which modern coexistence was both a lived experience and a modern cultural norm in the region; and finally to underscore the degree to which this coexistence was a choice and an expression of will and an act of interpretation of an undeniable historic social reality of religious and ethnic diversity that has long defined the Middle East.