Decolonisation: Power, Politics, and Knowledge
12, 19, and 26 February 2021
Aga Khan University Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations
Full info at:
2. International Conference:
Narratives of Order, and Discourses of Sovereignty
in late medieval Egypt and Syria
(Closing conference of the ERC project MMS-II, UGent, Belgium, 2017-21)
Cairo, November, 28-30, 2021
in cooperation with:
Institut français d’archéologie orientale (IFAO)
American University in Cairo (AUC)
Nederlands-Vlaams Instituut in Caïro (NVIC)
Keynote speaker: Konrad Hirschler (FUBerlin)
The Mamlukisation of the Mamluk Sultanate-II (MMS-II): Historiography,
Political Order and State Formation in Fifteenth-Century Egypt and Syria’
(www.mms.ugent.be) (European Research Council ‘Consolidator Grant’ Project) is
a collaborative research program on fifteenth-century Arabic historiography
that runs at Ghent University (Belgium) from January 2017 to December 2021
The ERC project MMS-II invites contributions to its three-day closing
conference in Cairo (Egypt) in November 2021. We welcome papers that engage
with the rich Arabic historiographical traditions of the ‘Mamluk’ Sultanate of
Cairo (seventh/thirteenth-tenth/sixteenth centuries), and that question in
particular the complex contextual, textual or semiotic layers which connect
texts of history in diverse ways to the social, cultural and above all
political environments of their production, reception and circulation.
In November 2021 (November, 28-30) the MMS-II team will organize its closing
conference to present the main results from its research and reach out to the
wider academic community. This three-day conference will be organized in
Cairo, Egypt, to maximize the potential involvement of colleagues and students
from the MENA region. It will consist of individual paper sessions with
respondents, presentations of MMS-II research results, and a keynote. We will
work together with international academic partners in Cairo (AUC, IFAO, NVIC)
for this closing conference’s organization.
We welcome submissions of paper proposals that tackle the many contextual,
textual and semiotic dimensions of the production and construction of social
memories in the Arabic historiographical traditions of the seventh/thirteenth
to the tenth/sixteenth centuries. We particularly seek contributions that
critically engage with one or more of the following three themes:
Contexts: what are a historiographical text’s, or textual corpus’, relevant
socio-economic, cultural and political contexts, and what can be said about an
author’s positioning within these contexts, his engagement with them through
social practices such as competition and patronage, and the studied texts’
relations with these practices?
Texts: how are a historiographical text and its narratives organized and
structured; how have textual strategies such as narrative modes, time,
narrator and focalization been deployed, and to what effect; what do inter-
and para-textual relations reveal?
Meanings: what textual themes, didactic purposes and layers of meaning are
being communicated in a historiographical text, or set of texts; how does a
text, or set of texts, represent a communicative act, or even a social
performance, in complex discursive contexts of power relations; what semantic
and discursive fields is a text, or set of texts, operating in, and to what
A maximum of 18 individual paper proposals will be selected for presentation
and discussion at this 3-day conference. The conference languages will be
English and Arabic, and facilities for simultaneous translation will be
foreseen to ensure communication and discussion across linguistic barriers.
Papers (max. 8,000 words, in English or Arabic) will be pre-circulated
(deadline for draft paper submission: October, 31, 2021) and their summary
presentations at the conference (max. 15 minutes) will be followed by
responses from invited specialists as well as further discussion with other
participants. Participants are also expected to commit to revise their papers
for inclusion in a future peer-reviewed conference publication.
The MMS-II project will be able to cover most of the travel and accommodation
expenses for selected participants.
Paper proposals should include: name, short CV, paper title, related
conference theme (contexts, texts, meanings), paper abstract (max. 250 words,
briefly stating subject, rationale, methodology, main argument and/or expected
results). They should be sent to email@example.com , before April, 1, 2021.
3. Islamic Interpretive Tradition and Gender Justice: Processes of Canonization Subversion and Change – Y Amin, N. Reda, eds. McGill, 2020
4. Polymaths of Islam, Power and Networks of Knowledge in Central Asia – J Pickett Cornell U Press, 2020
5. The Khalili Research Centre is offering a fully-funded graduate scholarship to study Islamic Art and Architecture at the University of Oxford from the beginning of the academic year 2021–2022. The Scholarship is awarded on the basis of academic merit and potential. It will cover full course fees, and maintenance costs equivalent to the UK national minimum doctoral stipend. It may be either for a DPhil or a combined four-year programme consisting of a Master’s course in Islamic Art and Architecture proceeding to a DPhil. The application deadline is 11 January but it is recommended to approach your potential supervisor by 22 December. For further details, please visit: https://krc.web.ox.ac.uk/article/i.m.-pei-scholarship
6. Seeking chapters for the edited volume, Decolonizing Islamic Art in Africa. Please submit proposals to firstname.lastname@example.org by January 15, 2021.
This publication examines the status of Muslim visual and expressive cultures in the wake of decolonization in Africa. It asks, in the years leading up to and following struggles for independence from colonial regimes across the continent, how was “Islamic art” mobilized, interpreted, transformed, or even erased in relation to projects of nation-building and in the context of new cultural and religious identities emerging across Africa and its diasporas? It will consider the different strategies through which diverse actors–political leaders, architects, artists, museum curators, members of local religious communities, and others–approached the social and conceptual structures upheld by previous colonial regimes and explore the consequences of such processes of negotiation for the visual, spatial, and intellectual parameters framing Muslim institutions, practices, and cultural works in “postcolonial” Africa.
We also approach the topic of decolonizing Islamic art in Africa from a historiographical perspective, presenting case studies that disrupt and interrogate the colonial-era geographical and conceptual boundaries shaping the disciplines of Islamic and African art history. In recent years, the history of Islamic art in Africa has been subject to reevaluation through critical attention to the continent’s position within global networks of trade and the subsequent influence of African actors in shaping Muslim visual and material cultures within and beyond the continent, particularly during Europe’s medieval period. Less attention, however, has been given to the African continent’s dynamic relationship with Islam and Muslim culture during the course of the twentieth century, a period no less marked by escalating global interest in Africa’s material and cultural resources and by the active participation of Muslim Africans in new cross-regional and cross-continental religious and cultural communities. This publication contends that attention to this longer history of African agency within a global Muslim community is crucial for speaking back to colonial frameworks that continue to distort our understanding of both “Islamic” and “African” art today.
The volume’s case studies will ideally represent a broad geographical scope and may address a range of expressive practices and objects, including architecture, landscape, urban design, painting, decorative arts, ritual objects, domestic display, music, performance, etc. While the publication is envisioned to focus on the years directly leading up to and following African independence movements, contributions exploring the continuing “decolonization” of Muslim cultural expression in Africa and the field of art history into the twenty-first century are also welcome.
Please submit a 500-word abstract, title, and bio by January 15, 2021 to email@example.com. First drafts of accepted contributions due June 1, 2021. Contributions to the volume will be approximately 6,000-8,000 words. All essays will undergo a double-blind, peer-review process before final acceptance.
Ashley Miller, Ph.D.
Forsyth Postdoctoral Fellow
History of Art Department
University of Michigan
7. The 10th anniversary issue from the International Journal of Islamic Architecture is out now!
Special Issue: ‘Islamic Architecture: Reflections on the Field’
For more information about the special issue and journal, click here >> https://www.intellectbooks.com/international-journal-of-islamic-architecture
Aims & Scopes
The International Journal of Islamic Architecture (IJIA) publishes peer-reviewed articles on the urban design, architecture and landscape architecture of the historic Islamic world, encompassing the Middle East and parts of Africa and Asia, but also the more recent geographies of Islam in its global dimensions. The main emphasis is on the detailed analysis of the historical, theoretical, and practical aspects of architecture.
8. Jafar and Shokoh Farzaneh Prize for Best Article on Persian Literature
The University of Oklahoma’s Farzaneh Family Center for Iranian and Persian Gulf Studies is pleased to announce a competition for the Jafar and Shokoh Farzaneh Prize for Best Article on Persian Literature. This $2000 prize will be awarded to the best published article on any topic relating to Persian literature. The winner will also be invited to present a public lecture at the University of Oklahoma and to serve on the award selection committee for the following year. All relevant articles or book chapters published in English or Persian in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals or edited volumes between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2020 are eligible for consideration.
Submissions should be emailed to Marjan Seirafi-Pour (firstname.lastname@example.org) by April 30, 2021. Results will be announced at the Association for Iranian Studies general meeting at the Middle East Studies Association conference in 2021.
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- December 19, 2020
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