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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

CALL FOR PAPERS - (De-)Centering Islam and the Question of Authenticity

CALL FOR PAPERS - (De-)Centering Islam and the Question of Authenticity

10th Annual Duke-UNC Islamic Studies Graduate Student Conference
Duke University, Durham, North Carolina- February 16 & 17, 2013
"What mattered was not the authenticity of facts about the past but the
power of the
spiritual idea they sought to convey…" Talal Asad Formations of the Secular
On behalf of the Duke-UNC Islamic Studies Graduate Student Organizing
Committee, we
are pleased to accept abstracts for our tenth annual conference. With this
year's theme,
"(De-)Centering Islam and the Question of Authenticity," we hope to
examine the question of
authenticity as constructed, performed, and challenged in Islamic
traditions that presume a
discursive center. A corollary concern of this inquiry is whether
assertions of authenticity in
Islam need rely on a center-periphery dynamic: we see much evidence for
arguments in favor of
as well as against this interpretation.
We invite papers from a range of disciplines (including art and art
history, design, geography,
literature, music, philosophy, political science, religious studies,
cultural anthropology, history
and sociology) that examine such questions within historical and
contemporary Islamicate
Possible themes for papers include but are not limited to:
· Revivalism and reform in multiple modernities
· Intersections of religious authenticity with race, gender, and nation
· Representations of Islam in America
· Defining and negotiating boundaries of Islamic orthodoxy and heterodoxy
· Aesthetics of authenticity in Islamic art and architecture
· "Appearing authentic," health, hygiene, and clothing Muslim bodies
· Innovative hermeneutics in Qur'anic exegesis
· Debating 'authentic' membership within the umma and convert communities
· Reconsidering the dominance of the Arabic language in Islamic Studies
&/or "lived" Islam
As a hallmark of the Duke-UNC Islamic Studies Conference, we will provide
opportunity for
interactive, deliberative, and interdisciplinary engagement with scholarly
work in progress
by gathering in an intimate workshop format. We expect that those invited
to present papers
will remain present for the duration of the two-day conference in order to
engage the other
participants in a true exchange of ideas. Lunch and refreshments will be
provided on both days,
and a formal dinner will be held on Saturday night.
Limited financial assistance to cover travel expenses will be offered to
those who demonstrate
financial need and do not receive funding from their home institutions.
Proposal Submission Requirements:
Please submit at minimum a 500-word abstract accompanied by a working
and CV to by December 1, 2012. In addition, fill out
this brief
biographical record at the time of your conference submission. Submissions
that include
a written paper are highly preferred. Ph.D. students in advanced stages of
research and
dissertation writing are especially encouraged to apply.

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