NEWS

Tobunken-GHC Seminar "Muslim Perceptions of Pre-Islamic Pasts: Changing Perspectives on Heritage and History in Egypt and Indonesia"

Date and time: 18th September (Tue), 2018 4:30~6:30PM

Venue: Conference Room 1 (3rd Floor), Institute for Advanced Stduies on Asia

Speaker: Prof. R. Michael Feener (University of Oxford)

Language: English

Abstract:
His paper (seminar's title) explores a diverse range of historic Muslim experiences with and appreciations of pre-Islamic cultural legacies. The discussion begins with an overview of Muslim interpretations of Qur'anic verses urging believers to reflect on the visible traces of pasts connected with traditions of pre-Islamic Arabia and Biblical literature. This is followed by an examination of a series of historical vignettes relating medieval and early modern encounters between Muslims and the material remains of past civilzations that remained visible in the lands that they lived: ranging from Egypt to the Indonesian island of Java. Taken together, the historical data presented here clearly demonstrates that there is no single, normative'Islamic'approach to the cultural heritage of pre-Islamic civilizations. Rather, conversations about the meanings of the past for life in the present and visions of the future are dynamic discourses incorporating an expansive body of ideas and experiences across diverse communities.

Speaker's Profile
Prof. R. Michael Feener is the Sultan of Oman Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies, and Islamic Centre Lecturer in the History Faculty at the University of Oxford. He was formerly Research Leader of the Religion and Globalisation Research Cluster at the Asia Research Institute, and Associate Professor in the Department of History at the National University of Singapore. He has also taught at Reed College and the University of California, Riverside, and held visiting professor positions and research fellowships at Harvard, Kyoto University, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris), the University of Copenhagen, The Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art (Honolulu), and the International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS) in Leiden, the Netherlands. He has published extensively in the fields of Islamic studies and Southeast Asian history, as well as on post-disaster reconstruction, religion and development. He is currently Head of the Maldives Heritage Survey.
His website:https://www.history.ox.ac.uk/people/dr-r-michael-feener

Organizer: Global History Collaborative (GHC)

Co-organizer: Institute for Advanced Studeis on Asia (IASA)

Contact: ghc[at]ioc.u-tokyo.ac.jp