The Reception of European Orientalism in the East

Mostafa Hussein's picture
November 14, 2015
New Hampshire, United States
Subject Fields: 
European History / Studies, German History / Studies, Islamic History / Studies
Jewish Studies Conference, November 14 and 15, 2015: The Reception of European Orientalism in the East: Scholarly Encounters in India, Iran, and the Mashriq during the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries European scholarship on Islam grew rapidly during the course of the nineteenth century, particularly in the German-speaking academic world. Imperial politics led to the acquisition of manuscripts and facilitated travel to the East by students and scholars. The scholarship on Islam was affected by the imperial political framework, as Edward Said has argued, and also by theological interests and philological methods, as Suzanne Marchand has demonstrated. The purpose of this conference is to investigate the reception by Muslim scholars in India, Egypt, and Palestine of European scholarship on Islam, and to interrogate the impact of travel to India and the Mashriq on the nature of the scholarship produced by Europeans. Establishing personal relationships, experiencing Islam as a practiced religion, examining archeological sites and artifacts as well as manuscripts, learning about Islam from Muslims, and refining linguistic abilities were some of the many experiences for the Europeans that emerged from their travel. The interactions were multi-confessional, as Jews as well as Christians were among the European scholars who traveled East, and also among those in the East who met their European counterparts. The broader intellectual, political, and scholarly frameworks within India, Egypt, and Palestine that shaped the reception of the European interventions has received little attention to date and will be the primary focus of the conference. Papers will examine selected educational institutions, including the universities of al-Azhar, Aligarh, Punjab, and Jerusalem, and the time frame will range from the mid-nineteenth century to the years prior to World War II. Sponsored by: the Jewish Studies Program, The John Sloan Dickey Center for International Understanding, The Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Program, and the Leslie Center for the Humanities Class of 1930 Room, Rockefeller Center Saturday, November 14, 2015 12:30 pm Opening Remarks and Welcome 1:00 pm George Williamson, Florida State University, Theological Dimensions of German Orientalism 2:00 – 5:00 pm Travis Zadeh, Haverford College, Moral Decay and the Superstitious Mind: Reflections on Islamic Modernism beyond Arabia Jeffrey Diamond, St. John’s University, Judaism plus Proselytism, and Christianity minus the Teaching of St. Paul: G.W. Leitner's Intellectual Encounters with Islam and Muslims in Nineteenth Century Lahore and British India Roy Bar Sadeh, Columbia University, Between Colonialism, Orientalism, and the Multifaceted Genealogies of Islamic Reformism: al-Manar and Aligarh 5:00 pm Ayesha Jalal, Tufts University, The Prophet's Life: South Asian Contestations of European Biographies Sunday, November 15, 2015 9:00 am - 12:00 pm Ruchama Johnston-Bloom, NYU, Dieses wirklich westöstlichen Mannes: The German-Jewish Orientalist Josef Horovitz in Germany, India, and Palestine Abraham Rubin, Lawrence University, Muhammad Asad’s Conversion to Islam as Case-Study in Central-European Jewish Self-Fashioning Mostafa Hussein, Brandeis University, Leo Mayer's Encounter with Islamic Art and Archaeology in the Holy Land 1:00 - 4:00 pm Samer Rashwani, University of Tübingen, The Reception of Goldziher’s Contribution to Qur’anic Studies in the Arabic World Katalin Rac, University of Florida, Arabic Literature for the Colonized and the Colonizer: a history of Ignaz Goldziher’s textbook "Short History of Arabic Literature" Umar Ryad, University of Utrecht, Early European Orientalists in the Royal Academy of Language in Cairo: A Controversy of Religion, Western Hegemony and Politics (1933) 4:30 pm Concluding Remarks
Contact Info: 
The conference is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is requested. Please contact Prof. Susannah Heschel, chair, Jewish Studies Program, Dartmouth College: