Near Eastern Languages and Cultures | Islam/Muslims in Anthropological Literature
N695 | 13670 | Shahrani

The main focus of the seminar will be on the representations of
Islam and Muslims in the ethnographic/historical literature of the
Middle East and former Soviet Central Asia. The latest edition of
Orientalism by Edward Said and a selection of ethnographies by
Western and native Authors will be read and critically discussed in
light of some recent critiques of the nature, purpose and direction
of traditional practices in the social sciences. The central aim of
the seminar is to explore relationships between ethnographers
(producers) and their ethnographic representations (products) of the
Muslim peoples and cultures they study. In particular the
significance of place (of ethnographers culture of orientation, of
education and graduate training, of employment, of research and
fieldwork), gender, and voice (e.g. speaking of or for people
studied, institutions funding the research, and governments and
agencies supporting the research efforts) within the broader
sociopolitical and intellectual environment (especially of post 9-11-
2001), and their impact upon the ethnographic accounts will be
examined and assessed.