Research events

Listed below are forthcoming research events in the Institute of Arab & Islamic Studies. See also the events for all of SSIS.

Any SSIS staff or postgrads may always attend. Anyone else should contact the department or the centre in question.

Please also see individual research centre sites for other events.

View past seminars.

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21 February 201817:15

Visiting Speaker: Dr Akanksha Mehta - Negotiating Space on the Right: Everyday Politics of Israeli Zionist Settler Women in the Southern West Bank

Right-wing movements that have mobilised women have had very uneasy encounters with feminism and feminist politics. Focusing mainly on themes of motherhood and the familial, feminist scholars often view the increasing participation of women in the right-wing as a 'problem' that needs to be 'countered,' thereby silencing the multiplicity of narratives, roles, and politics that encapsulate the everyday experiences of right-wing women. Moreover, dominant theorizations of right-wing women either depict them as ‘subjects/victims/pawns’ of right-wing men that live in ‘false consciousness’ or as beings with a ‘quasi/partial/limited’ agency; ignoring sites of complexities, contradictions, subversions, and resistance among right-wing women. In this paper, drawing on ethnographic research conducted with right-wing women in the Zionist Settler movement in Palestine-Israel in 2014, I present narratives that examine the intersections of settler women’s everyday politics and space. I argue that through a politics of the everyday, Zionist settler women construct, transform, and negotiate with space and spatialities. These negotiations on the right not only further their political violence and settler colonialism but also become means to bargain with patriarchal communities/homes, male-formulated ideologies and discourses, and male-dominated right-wing projects and spaces. These spatial negotiations replicate and affirm as well as subvert and challenge patriarchal structures and power hierarchies, troubling the binaries of home/world, private/public, personal/political, and victim/agent. Akanksha Mehta is a lecturer in International Relations at the School of Global Studies, University of Sussex. She teaches courses on gender, sexuality, race, and political violence. She finished her PhD at the Centre for Gender Studies, SOAS, University of London in 2016, writing a thesis on the everyday politics of right-wing women in the Hindu Nationalist Movement in India and Israeli Zionist Settler Project in the West Bank, Palestine. Her thesis uses ethnographic and narrative material to interrogate conceptualisations of space, agency, violence, and everyday politics. She is currently working on the book manuscript for this project. More recently, she is thinking and writing about critical intersectional and feminist pedagogies and is a part of the Decolonize Sussex movement. She is also a photographer and visual artist.. Full details
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28 February 201817:15

Visiting Speaker: Dr Haila Manteghi - The Alexander Romance in Persian History and Literature

In Persian tradition and literature, Alexander the Great is usually depicted with two faces – either as the two-horned one of the Qur’an or as the accursed-one of Zoroastrian tradition. This lecture endeavours to show that Persian literature, legend and mythopoetics has much more to say about Alexander than simply this, while demonstrating why and how the Persian image of Alexander is completely distinguishable from the Islamic portrayal of the world conqueror. I will concentrate on how the Greek Alexander Romance entered classical Persian literature, revealing how Alexander became as Persian as any other hero/king in the Persian tradition, as well as illustrate with great detail how Alexander is pictured in the works of great Persian poets ranging from the tenth to seventeenth century, with particular focus on Nizami’s Book of Alexander. I also demonstrate the existence of a positive view of Alexander in both Classical Arabic and Persian sources that is not just the result of biases derived from the Islamic era, but which also reflects the viewpoint of the pre-Islamic Persian depiction of Alexander.. Full details
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9 - 11 April 2018

British Association for Islamic Studies (BRAIS) Conference 2018

The British Association for Islamic Studies (BRAIS) Conference is coming to the University of Exeter 9th – 11th April 2018. We are pleased to announce that registration is now open for this years’ BRAIS conference which will take place at the University of Exeter, hosted by the Centre for the Study of Islam (CSI) at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies. The British Association for Islamic Studies is the UK’s leading learned society and professional organisation focused on enhancing research and teaching about Islam and Muslim cultures and societies in UK higher education. This is an exciting event which will include presentations from a number of Exeter students and staff. Please view the draft programme at: http://www.brais.ac.uk/conferences/brais-conference-2018/brais-2018-programme “ To register for this event please go to: http://store.exeter.ac.uk/conferences-events/college-of-social-sciences-and-international-studies/conferences/fifth-annual-conference-of-the-british-association-for-islamic-studies-brais The deadline for guaranteed accommodation is Monday 12th February (subject to availability). Final registration is Monday 19th March.. Full details
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