Tue 20 - Fri 23 October 2015 | NISIS Autumn School | Changes and Debates in the Study of Islam and Muslim Societies | University of Amsterdam

From Tuesday 20 until Friday 23 October 2015, the NISIS Autumn School about changes and debates in the study of Islam and Muslim societies was held at the University of Amsterdam. Convenors: Professor Gerard Wiegers (University of Amsterdam) and professor Léon Buskens (Leiden University). The NISIS Autumn School is part of the NISIS Training Programme. Participants obtained 5 ECTS after successful completion of the programme.

Programme

Tuesday 20 October 2015

Afternoon programme (open to the public)
Location: Doelenzaal, University Library, Singel 425, Amsterdam

Opening session
14.30 - 15.00: Registration with coffee and tea
15.00 - 15.10: Official opening by Prof. Dr. Frank van Vree (Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Amsterdam)
15.10 - 15.20: Welcome by Prof. Dr. Thijl Sunier (Chairman of the NISIS board; VU University Amsterdam)
15.20 - 15.30: Introduction of the Autumn School theme – Changes and Debates in the Study of Islam and Muslim Societies by Prof. Dr. Gerard Wiegers (Convenor; NISIS board member; University of Amsterdam)

Keynote lectures: session 1
Chair: Prof. Dr. Herman Beck (Tilburg University)
15.30 - 16.15: Keynote lecture 1 by Prof. Dr. Hassan Rachik (Hassan II University of Casablanca), entitled ‘Processes of secularization in Morocco.’
16.15 - 16.30: Questions and discussion
16.30 - 17.00: Coffee and tea break
17.00 - 17.45: Keynote lecture 2 by Prof. Dr. Maribel Fierro (Instituto de Lenguas y Culturas del Mediterráneo y Oriente Próximo), entitled ‘Philology in the study of Muslim societies: the case of Spain.’
17.45 -18.00: Questions and discussion
18.00 - 18.30: Drinks at Doelenzaal (central hall)

Wednesday 21 October 2015

Afternoon programme (open to the public)
Location: Doelenzaal, University Library, Singel 425, Amsterdam

Keynote lectures: session 2
Chair: Prof. Dr. Thijl Sunier (VU University Amsterdam)
14.30-15.15: Keynote lecture 3 by Prof. Dr. Hakan Yavuz (University of Utah), entitled ‘Islamic Enlightenment and the Market Forces in Turkey.’
15.15-15.30: Questions and discussion
15.30-16.00: Coffee and tea break
16.00-16.45: Keynote lecture 4 by Dr. Jörn Thielmann (Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg), entitled ‘"Islam" – what does this mean? Critical reflections of an Islamicist.’
16.45-17.00: Questions and discussion

Thursday 22 October 2015

Afternoon programme: (open to the public)
Location: Doelenzaal, University Library, Singel 425, Amsterdam

Keynote lectures session 3 
Chair: Prof. Dr. Dick Douwes (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
14.30-15.15: Keynote lecture 5 by Prof. Dr. Gabriel Martinez-Gros (l’Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre - La Défense), entitled ‘Ibn Khaldûn, a Theory for our Time?’
15.15-15.30: Questions and discussion
15.30-16.00: Coffee and tea break
16.00-16.45: Keynote lecture 6 by Prof. Dr. Saba Mahmood (University of California, Berkeley), entitled ‘Secularism and Minority Politics: Comparative Legal Frameworks.’
16.45-17.00: Questions and discussion

PDF version of the programme

Theme

During the last twenty-five years the study of Islam and Muslim societies in Western academia has witnessed a tremendous flourishing, in some ways reminding us of a similar spectacular growth during the high days of Western colonialism in the Middle East. This comparison is not accidental, as scholarly study and societal concerns have again been intimately linked. However, important differences can also be found, such as the cultural dominance of American scholarship and the strong reactions to “Western views” in the Muslim world. Scholars in the Netherlands have significantly contributed to the flourishing of the field through their research, teaching, and involvement in society. NISIS has been an important agent during the past six years by bringing together most scholars in the Netherlands and by strongly linking their work to international debates, especially through the spring and autumn schools.

The main aim of this autumn school was to perform a stocktaking of these recent changes and debates. What are important trends? What are the fruits of these twenty-five years of hard work? How do different intellectual traditions, disciplinary and geographical, work together, or not? What major lacunae and desiderata can be identified? How to comply with strong societal demands for knowledge and at the same time respect the highest standards of intellectual integrity?

NISIS has invited major scholars in the field with different disciplinary, geographical, and cultural backgrounds to lecture about issues which they consider worthy of attention. During three successive afternoons they delivered public lectures in which they presented their understanding of the recent past in which they have been major actors, presenting their own cutting edge research. In the morning session on the following days these senior scholars discussed selected readings and the work of current Research Master and PhD students in the light of these recent changes in scholarship and current debates. The school resulted in an overview of the field through an ongoing conversation between scholars of several generations.

Keynote speakers

Maribel Fierro | Instituto de Lenguas y Culturas del Mediterráneo y Oriente Próximo | more information
Saba Mahmood | University of California | more information
Gabriel Martinez-Gros | l’Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre La Défense | more information
Hassan Rachik | Hassan II University of Casabalanca | more information 
Jörn Thielmann | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg | more information  
Hakan Yavuz | University of Utah | more information

Obtaining credits (5 ECTS)

The NISIS Autumn School is part of the NISIS Training Programme. Please read more about course objectives and requirements here.

Participants (PhD candidates and research master students) who wanted to obtain credits for participation in the Autumn School (5 EC) were required to:

- read the prescribed literature in advance;
- give a presentation (15 minutes) in one of the afternoon workshops and/or role act as a discussant* in one of the other presentations;
- write a paper (3500-5000 words) in which you relate the theme of the Autumn School to your own research.
- deadline for submission of papers is Tuesday 1 December.

Discussants were required to:

- carefully study the readings as prescribed by the keynote speakers in advance;
- prepare questions for discussion in advance in which you relate the topic of the presentation to the prescribed readings;
- actively participate in and contribute to the discussion.

Last Modified: 30-11-2015