Muslims: a European History, 16th-21st c.

David Do Paço's picture
October 25, 2019
Subject Fields: 
Contemporary History, Early Modern History and Period Studies, European History / Studies, Immigration & Migration History / Studies, Islamic History / Studies

Muslims: a European history, 16th-21st c.

This academic year, the European History Research Seminar of the Centre for the History at Science Po re-examines the early modern and modern European societies in the light of the history of Muslim individuals and communities. 

Organized by David Do Paço, it offers various approaches to Muslims as a socio-economically and culturally highly-diverse population – including gender, generational and regional differences – in order to get a better understanding of the economic, social and political transformations of European countries over the longue durée. Doing so, it reflects an academic shift from islamology to history of Muslims in Christian-ruled and/or secular countries. While engaging with Imperial, colonial and post-colonial historiographies, it also emphasizes the early history of Muslims in Europe and strongly deconstructs and challenges the dominant and recent given-judeo-christian memory of the “old continent”. 

The seminar subsequently aims to de-westernize the European history. It is hence a contribution to a broader discussion about the relevance of the structuration of the academic world in regional areas, and the impact of such intellectual framework on public history, politics and education. Focusing on individual and collective actors, it explores the multiple imperfectly overlapping, competing and sometime conflicting circles of social belonging in which Muslims operated in Europe. It analyses the constant transformation of European social fabrique(s). It looks at migrations and socio-cultural diversity as an intrinsic phenomenon of European history. If the seminar pays a particular attention to the social life of the European Muslims, it will also focus on the multiple processes of identification that they faced, negotiated or initiated, taking into account the public policies by which they were discriminated, protected or voluntarily ignored.

‘Muslims: a European History’ is an interdisciplinary seminar that promotes dialogue between early modern and modern historians of Europe and between historians and sociologists, ethnologists, anthropologists among many other social scientists. It is intended to bring together senior and junior researchers, Ph.D. candidates and Master degree students. It is organized in five monthly workshops and held at Sciences Po in Paris.



venue: Centre d'Histoire de Sciences Po, salle du Traité, 56 rue Jacob, 75006 Paris


Workshop 1 (October 25, 2019, 2-6pm): Research on Muslims in Europe. A Specific Method?

David Do Paço (Sciences Po, CHSP) 

General introduction

Juliette Galonnier (Sciences Po, CERI) 

A Sociology of Muslims in France: methods and perspectives

Fabio Giomi (CNRS, CETOBaC)

‘More horses than women’: for a study of Muslim feminine lives in South-eastern Europe

David Do Paço (Sciences Po, CHSP)

How to explore the blind spots of the European early modern history?


Workshop 2 (November 22, 2019, 2-6pm): Converts, Conversions and Syncretism(s)

Isabelle Poutrin (Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, CERHIC)

Moriscos, neo-converts and renegades. Conversions to/from Islam in the 16th- and 17th-century Mediterranean

Juliette Galonnier (Sciences Po, CERI)

Choosing Faith, Facing Race. Experiences of converts to Islam in France and the United States in the current period

Nathalie Clayer (CNRS, CETOBaC)

Religious contacts beyond conversion and syncretism. The example of the Balkans at the end of the Ottoman era


Workshop 3 (December 13, 2019, 2-5pm): Muslim Women in Europe

Jocelyne Dakhlia (EHESS, CRH)

Invisible or "disenchanted": Muslim women in Europe.

Fabio Giomi (CNRS, CETOBaC)

Making Muslim women European: associations, gender and Islam in post-Ottoman Bosnia


Workshop 4 (February 6, 2020, 2-6pm): Networks and Circles of Social Belonging

M’hamed Oualdi (Sciences Po, CHSP)

Tunisians in Tuscany in the 1880s. Italy as a field of action for colonized subjects

Sophie Hohmann (INALCO)

Muslims in the Russian Arctic: Professional Trajectories and Community Fragmentation

Nadia Marzouki (Sciences Po, CERI)

Islam, an American religion.


Workshop 5 (March 5, 2020, 2-6pm): The Muslim Discovery of Europe. New Perspectives 

Anne-Laure Dupont (Sorbonne Université, CRM)

Europe in the travelogues (rihla) of Muslims in early modern and modern times

Frédéric Hitzel (CNRS, CETOBaC)

Western Europe as seen through the reports (Sefâretnâme) of the Ottoman ambassadors

Antoine Perrier (Sorbonne Université and Sciences Po, CHSP)

A protected prince in Paris. Bey Aḥmad II’s journey in 1934 according to the chronicle of Muḥammad al-Miqdād al-Wartānī

Contact Info: 

David Do Paço is an assistant professor in 18th-century history. His research is located at the crossroad between urban history, historical anthropology, and global micro-history. It emphasises the diverse elements of commensurability established between diverse early modern empires.
He was trained at the University Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, where in 2012 I defended my thesis on the social integration of foreigners in 18th-century Vienna. His book, L’Orient à Vienne au dix-huitième siècle has been published in 2015 within the 'Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment’. It particularly analysed the multiple circles of social belonging in, and between which Ottoman subjects operated in the Habsburg capital. As a Max-Weber post-doctoral fellow at the EUI (2013-15) and a core fellow at CEU-IAS (2016), he has extended the focus of his work to the Eastern Mediterranean and he has explored a form of cross-cultural regional integration between the Ottoman and the Habsburg empires. Since 2015 at Sciences Po, this brought him to further his research in urban history, with a particular attention, first, to connected composite and diplomatic cities (especially Istanbul, Trieste and Vienna) and, second, to Muslim men and women in the early modern European and North American cities.
In line with this research, he is contributing to several editorial projects like the CMR900, the Cambridge History of the Habsburg Monarchy, and the Routledge Handbook to Islam in the West (2nd ed.), and to several founded collective research projects such as A Global History of Free Ports, Atlantic Italies, and People in Motion.