Abstract: Long term lithospheric evolution (e.g., melting, differentiation, recycling) controls planetary thermal and volatile budgets and thus is crucial to making Earth a hospitable home for life. While lithospheric processes at plate boundaries are relatively well understood, intraplate processes, such as the production of continental basalts, remain enigmatic. Basalt volcanism is ubiquitous across every continent, is the most common type of subaerial volcanism, and occurs in a variety of tectonic settings. Melting beneath continents is thermodynamically difficult, and conventional models for melt generation do not accurately describe areas undergoing continental basalt volcanism. Primitive basalt and mantle xenolith geochemistry help characterize areas that experience continental volcanism and place constraints on processes that may contribute to melt generation beneath the continents. This research sheds light on the geodynamic history of the East African and Levant region and helps understand how mantle melting may occur both on earth and on other planets.