by JULIE POUCHER HARBIN, EDITOR, ISLAMiCommentary and TIRN, for DUKE TODAY on JULY 22, 2014:
Omid Safi, (pictured) a prominent Islamic studies professor and scholar, joined the faculty of Duke this month as director of the Duke Islamic Studies Center (DISC).
As the new William and Bettye Martin Musham Director for Islamic Studies, Safi will oversee DISC, the university’s hub of teaching, learning and research about Islam and Muslim communities.
Bettye Musham, whose $3 million gift supported the creation of the directorship, is also a founding member of the DISC advisory board. (For more information about the gift, click here.) Continue reading →
by EDWARD E. CURTIS IV for BULLETIN FOR THE STUDY OF RELIGION (EQUINOX PUBLISHING BLOG) on MAY 2, 2014:
Editor’s note (Bulletin for the Study of Religion): This post is part of the Reflections on Islamic Studies series.
By any measure, Islamic studies is a vibrant field. In the last several decades, the number of tenure-track positions dedicated to the study of Islam as a religion and to Muslim politics and societies has expanded. New journals have appeared; book sales are good; and interest in Islamic studies has led to important public humanities projects such as the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Muslim Journeys Bookshelf.
What makes Islamic studies so dynamic? For one, its ever-expanding body of participants, who come from a number of disciplinary perspectives. The field is populated by intellectual networks rather than one identifiable set of intellectual authorities. Islamic studies finds institutional homes not only in religious studies and Near Eastern languages departments, but also in history, anthropology, sociology, political science, ethnomusicology, and art and architecture, among other academic units. Continue reading →