MESAAS Events

2009 - 2010


Seminar in Arabic Studies

Thursday, 29th April 2010

The Poetry of the Ancient Arabic Sagas

Wolfhart Heinrichs
Harvard University

Dinner will be at 6:00 pm, on the third floor. The talk will begin at 7:00 pm. Members and guests of the Seminar who are not also members of Columbia's Faculty House may buy dinner vouchers in the Faculty House office on the ground floor before the meeting starts. Those unable to attend the dinner are welcome to join the talk at 7:00pm.

RSVP no later than MONDAY, 26th April if you plan to attend dinner to Yasmine Ramadan.

Faculty House, Columbia University
400 West 117th Street, New York, NY 10027

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, April 22 at 4:00 pm

Savarkar (1883-1966), Sedition and Surveillance:
The Rule of Law in Early 20th Century Colonial India

Janaki Bakhle
History, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.

Last South Asia Graduate Student Forum of the Spring Semester

Monday, April 19, 2010
4:10-6:00 p.m. | 208 Knox Hall

Styles, Stories, Scripts: Telugu and Tamil in Nayaka-Period Mural Painting in Tamil Nadu

Anna Seastrand
Art History and Archaeology

This paper addresses the theme of circulation through the close study of inscriptions and paintings at two seventeenth-century mural sites. Although located in the Tamil region, these sites make extensive use of Telugu language and the architectural and pictorial styles of Telugu-speaking areas.?? The mingling of styles and languages at these sites demonstrate the interrelation of artistic patronage and its political and social contexts. Focusing on a period, material, and area that are little studied and poorly understood highlights how the history of painting and the history of the region???the study of the dynamic political and social lives of the sites??? patrons, artisans and audiences???equally illumine one another.

The Forum is open to all members of the Columbia community. If you have any questions, contact Hamsa Stainton or Arthur Dudney.

Columbia Seminar in Ottoman and Turkish Studies

Whose War? Whose Holy War: The Ottomans in 1914

Mustafa Aksakal
History, American University

Friday, April 16th, 2010
1:00-3:00 pm | Faculty House (Seminar Room 4)

Why did the Ottomans in 1914 enter a war that was then still a European conflict, one in which the Ottomans seemed to have no immediate stake? Why did they declare jihad? Did they enter the war because Enver Pasha, the minister of war, was dazzled by German guns? Did the Ottomans declare holy war because Kaiser Hajji Muhammad Wilhelm II -- in the cheeky parlance of some Allied propagandists -- had ordered it?

Coffee and dessert to follow (3-5pm).

For directions to the Faculty House, please visit ??http://facultyhouse.columbia.edu/. For any questions, please contact Cenk Palaz.

Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference
on the Middle East, South Asia and Africa

Thursday, April 15 to Saturday, April 17, 2010
Contact email: CUgradconf@gmail.com

Full Program Now Available

Hosted by the Department of Middle East and Asian Languages
and Cultures (MEALAC) at Columbia University

The discipline that was once called ???Oriental Studies??? has been divided up in various ways in today???s university. Post-colonial literature has a foothold in the English department, history departments have by and large stopped confusing ???European history??? with ???world history,??? and of course the area studies departments with venerable names like Near Eastern Studies or South Asian Languages and Civilizations have taken up an array of new methodologies from other departments. Several universities have begun expanding their African and South Asian studies offerings under the umbrella of ???Global Studies.??? This conference is concerned not with ???the death of the discipline??? as so many others have been, but rather with the diversity of the disciplines. We will survey this through student presentations, two faculty discussion panels, and a keynote address by an influential scholar.

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, April 8th at 4:00 pm

Who is a Jew?
The Biological Sciences and National Self-Definition

Nadia Abu El-Haj
Anthropology, Barnard

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.

Thursday, April 1, 12:00-2:00pm
717 Hamilton Hall

Mobile Men and Mobile Texts in Indian Ocean Islam

Professor Engseng Ho??

Professor Ho, a specialist on Arab/Muslim diasporas and their relations with Western Empires, is Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Professor of History at Duke University. He was previously a Professor of Anthropology and a Senior Scholar at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies. His most recent publications include The Graves of Tarim: Genealogy and Mobility across the Indian Ocean (University of California Press, 2006).

Sponsored by the Ifriqiyya Colloquium in association with The Institute of African Studies and Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies (MESAAS).

Ph.D. Thesis Presentation on Religion and Politics

Parliaments of Caliphs: Reconstructing Islamic Law in Alaama Iqbal???s League of Muslim Nations

Haroon Moghul (Current PhD in MEALAC, Columbia University)
Discussant: Souleymane Bachir Diagne

Wednesday, March 31, 12:00???2:00pm
801 International Affairs Building

Lunch will be served.

Barbara Stoler Miller Lecture

Two Weddings and a Funeral: What is Islamic about the "Muslim"?? Princely State of Bhopal?

Barbara D. Metcalf
University of Michigan

Monday, March 29
509 Knox Hall | 4:00-5:30pm

Bhopal in colonial India is best known for having been ruled for?? over a hundred years from 1819 to 1926 by a lineage of four Muslim women. The third of the Bhopal begums, Nawab Shah Jehan Begum, was in power at?? the height of British rule in the late 19th century. Bhopal was routinely described as "the second largest Muslim princely state;" the state's label derived from the religious background of the ruler. Going beyond this label, many observers have described Shah Jehan Begum's period as one of "Islamization." In 1871, she made a radical second marriage, a break with respectability and family custom - which she justified as Islamic. In 1890 her second husband, one of the best known Islamic scholarly reformers and putative "jihadis" of the colonial era, died. Instead of understanding the period framed by these events by the blanket term of "Islamization," this talk explores issues of political autonomy, transnational networks, modern religious practice, and a ruler's distinctive taste.

Barbara D. Metcalf is the Alice Freeman Palmer Professor of History at the University of Michigan, where she served as Director, Center for South Asia Studies, 2004-07.

Co-sponsored by the Barnard College Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, March 25th at 4:00 pm

The Idea of the West:
Bhudev Mukhopadhyay's critique of Western modernity

Sudipta Kaviraj
MESAAS, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.

Ph.D. Thesis Presentation on Religion and Politics

Religions of Doubt:
Critique of Religion and Modernity in the Frankfurt School and in Iran ??? Adorno, Benjamin, Shariati and al-e Ahmad

Ajay Chaudhary (Current PhD in MEALAC, Columbia University)
Discussant: Sudipta Kaviraj

Wednesday, March 24, 12:00???2:00 pm
801 International Affairs Building

Lunch will be served.

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, March 11th at 4:00 pm

Prophets, Kings and Heroes:
The Reformulation of Iranian History in the Ninth Century Arabic Histories

Ghazzal Dabiri
MESAAS, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.

Friday, March 5, 2010
208 Knox Hall | Noon-2pm

The Story of Kiswahili?

John Mugane
African and African-American Studies, Harvard

Professor Mugane is working on a history of Kiswahili. ??His most recent publications include Linguistic Typology and Representation of African Languages (Africa World Press, 2003).

Sponsored by The Institute of African Studies and Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies (MESAAS).

Conference on Ottoman Legacies in Text and Landscape

Friday, February 26th
Faculty House, 400 West 117th St.

Ottoman Beirut: History, Legacy, and Sectarian??Memory

Professor James Reilly
Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, University??of??Toronto,

The Ottoman Legacy in the Urban Landscape: A??Way of Seeing.

Assistan Professor Amy Mills
Department of Geography,??University of??South??Carolina

Moderator: Christine Philliou, Columbia University

The Ottoman legacy in the Middle East and Balkans has been a frequent??subject of debate over the past several years, ever more so after the??publication of Carl Brown's edited volume, Imperial Legacy: The Ottoman Imprint on the Balkans and the Middle East, in 1996. While common treatments of this question include studies of politics, language, and architecture, this conference will focus on two specific??and very different types of legacies: the way the Ottoman past is remembered in modern/confessional Lebanese historiography, and the ways it is remembered and forgotten in a neighborhood, or mahalle, of??Istanbul today.??

Seminar in Arabic Studies

Marcel Khalife's 'Oh Father, I'm Yusuf' and the Struggle for Political Freedom and Religious Sensitivity

Professor Nasser Al-Taee, University of Tennessee

Thursday, February 25
Faculty House, 400 West 117th Street

Drinks will be available in the Faculty House starting at 5:30 P.M. Dinner will follow at 6:00 P.M. The talk will begin at 7:00 P.M.

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, February 25th at 4:00 pm

???The Black House,' or How The Zulus Became Jews

Hlonipha Mokoena
Anthropology, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.

South Asia Graduate Student Forum

From Delhi to Karachi:
The Problem of Muhajir Identity

Presentation by Zahra Sabri

Monday, February 22
208 Knox Hall | 4:10-6:00 p.m.

Sixty-two years after partition, the word muhajir (one who has quit his country) is used in lay and academic contexts for certain groups of people (and their descendents) who left present-day India for Pakistan after partition. With the rise of the Mohajir Qaumi Movement (MQM) in the 1980s and the party???s dramatic and sustained electoral success, there has been an overwhelming tendency to treat muhajir identity as synonymous with the MQM. This paper argues that muhajir identity is independent from, and predates, the MQM.

The Forum format is as follows:
20-30 minutes: Presentation
20-30 minutes: Q & A and discussion
60 minutes: Reception (food, samosa etc., and drink provided)

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, February 11th at 4:00 pm

Fashioning the Moral Subject:
Shari'a's Technologies of the Self

Wael Hallaq
MESAAS, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.
For more information, contact Jill Kitchen

MESAAS Colloquium:

Thursday, January 28th at 4:00 pm

Gandhi's philosophical qualms about the enlightenment

Akeel Bilgrami
Philosophy, Columbia

208 Knox Hall
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium. Printed copies will also be available in the department office.
For more information, contact Jill Kitchen

MESAAS ?????? ???????? ?????????? ???????????? ?????????? ??????????????????
Middle East Institute ???????? ?????????? ????????????
The Arabic Circle ?????????????????? ????????????????????????
invites you to its first meeting ???????????? ?????? ???????????????? ??????????
???Movie Screening: The Borders??? ?????? ????????: ??????????????
Moderated by Omar Khalifah Room 207 Knox Hall
Wed, January 27, 6:00-7:30 pm Refreshments will be served

Iran After the Election

The recent elections in Iran, and subsequent challenges to their legitimacy, have been a matter of enormous internal conflict in Iran, and of seemingly endless debate in the rest of the world. As protesters continue to take to the Iranian street to voice their opposition to the elections, fault-lines are emerging amongst the ruling elite. These momentous events constitute a significant challenge to the legitimacy of the Iranian regime and the future of the Islamic Republic. The conference will be an opportunity to have leading Iranian scholars and analysts discuss the impact of the recent elections, Iran's relationship with the international community and the theocratic foundations of the Islamic Republic.

Speakers:

  • Ervand Abrahamian, Baruch College
  • Asef Bayat, Leiden University
  • Richard Bulliet, Columbia University
  • Houchang Chehabi, Boston University
  • Hamid Dabashi, Columbia University
  • Mansour Farhang, Bennington College
  • Farideh Farhi, University of Hawaii
  • Hossein Kamaly, Barnard College
  • Firoozeh Kashani-Sabet, University of Pennsylvania
  • Gary Sick, Columbia University
  • Abdolkarim Soroush
  • Shahla Talebi, Arizona State University
  • Wayne White, Middle East Institute (D.C.)
  • Judith Yaphe, The National Defense University

Saturday, Dec 5, 8:30 a.m. - 7 p.m.
International Affairs Building,
Altschul Auditorium

http://www.sipa.columbia.edu/mei/iranconference/Home.html

Columbia Law School
Center for Gender and Sexuality Law

Feminist Theory Workshop

Afsaneh Najmabadi, Harvard University,

The State of Science and Sin

Tuesday, December 1, 2009, 4:20-6:10

Case Lounge, Room 701, Greene Hall, Columbia Law School

http://www.law.columbia.edu/center_program/gendersexuality/colloquium

The Edward Said Memorial Lecture

The Unipolar Moment and the Culture of Imperialism

Thursday, December 3, 2009 at 6:15 pm

Altschlul Auditorium, 417 International Affairs Building

Noam Chomsky

Institute Professor and Professor Emeritus
Massachusetts Instituteof Technology

This event is free and open to the public. Seating is on a first come, first served basis.
No tickets, no reservations required. Enter from 118th Street just off Amsterdam Avenue.

MESAAS Departmental Colloquium

Thursday, December 3rd, at 4:00 p.m.

Sir Henry Maine and the Post-1857 Crisis of Empire

Mahmood Mamdani
MESAAS, Columbia

Knox Hall, Room 208
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium.

MESAAS Departmental Colloquium

Thursday, November 19th, at 4:00 p.m.

The Virtues of Recalcitrance

Democracy from Foucault to Latour

Timothy Mitchell
MESAAS, Columbia

Knox Hall, room 208
Please note that the paper will be circulated in advance and will not be presented at the colloquium.

MESAAS ?????? ???????? ?????????? ???????????? ?????????? ??????????????????
Middle East Institute ???????? ?????????? ????????????
The Arabic Circle ?????????????????? ????????????????????????
invites you to its seventh meeting ???????????? ?????? ???????????????? ????????????
???Egyptian Colloquial??? ?????????????? ??????????????
Presented by Prof. Ghada Badawi Moderated by Omar Khalifah
Wed, November 18, 6:00-7:30 pm ?????? ???????? :?? ???????? ???????????????? 18 ?????????? ????????????
Room 207 Knox Hall Refreshments will be served

African Language Night

Date: Thursday, November 12, 2009
Time: 6:30 - 9:30pm
Location: 509 Knox Hall

Join the African Language Program at MESAAS for an evening of spoken word, skits, music, and food to celebrate the continents' languages.

Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference on the Middle East, South Asia and Africa

View details here...

Caste and Contemporary India

A conference in honor of Dr. B .R. Ambedkar, October 16-17, 2009