by ZAHEER KAZMI for LOS ANGELES REVIEW OF BOOKS on APRIL 4, 2014: 

In his semi-fictional account of Barbary Coast Pirate Utopias, Peter Lamborn Wilson traces the unwritten dissident history of a communion of outsiders — heterodox Muslims and Christian renegades. Unanchored from the conformist dictates of law and organized religion, “temporary autonomous zones” like the Coast flourished for a time between the 16th and 18th centuries, and they were the embodiment of a mode of engagement between Islam and the West detached from interreligious conflict or any dialogue patronized by power. Wilson aims to show how radical forms of religious liberty can be the harbingers of progress and understanding between civilizations, creating the space to experiment with novel forms of cross-cultural exchange. “[O]nly later,” he laments, “do the Orthodox Authorities arrive to straighten everyone out and make them toe the line.” The practice of stamping out the dual sins of radicalism and heterodoxy has continued to color the character of religious practices. Today, it is most evident in the largely state-sponsored strategies of moderate or liberal Muslims in an age of resurgent militancy and sectarianism in the Muslim world.

FULL ARTICLE

compiled by JULIE POUCHER HARBIN, EDITOR, ISLAMiCommentary and TIRN, on APRIL 10, 2014: 

University of Manchester doctoral candidate David H. Warren has shared with TIRN the abstract (below) and online link to his new article in New Middle Eastern Studies entitled The ‘Ulamā’ and the Arab Uprisings 2011-13: Considering Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the ‘Global Mufti,’ between the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamic Legal Tradition, and Qatari Foreign Policy. Continue reading

by Francesca de Châtel for MIDDLE EASTERN STUDIES (2014) on JANUARY 27, 2014: 

EXCERPT FROM “The Role of Drought and Climate Change in the Syrian Uprising: Untangling the Triggers of the Revolution”:  I will argue that it was not the drought per se, but rather the government’s failure to respond to the ensuing humanitarian crisis that formed one of the triggers of the uprising, feeding a discontent that had long been simmering in rural areas. Drought forms an integral part of Syria’s (semi-)arid climate and is not an exceptional phenomenon. Countries in the region such as Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine were also affected by drought in 2007/8, but only Syria experienced a humanitarian crisis, with large-scale migration of populations and widespread malnutrition. I will argue that this can be explained by the fact that the humanitarian crisis in fact predated the drought. Continue reading

via SOCIOLOGY OF ISLAM LISTSERV and PEDRAM KHOSRONEIAD on DECEMBER 28, 2013:
Call for papers: The Future of the Anthropology and Anthropologists of the Contemporary Middle East and Central Eurasia 
“13th EASA Biennial Conference: Collaboration, Intimacy & Revolution- innovation and continuity in an interconnected world”
Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Estonian Institute of Humanities, Tallinn University, Estonia
31st July - 3rd August, 2014
Deadline: 27/02/2014 Continue reading

via SOCIOLOGY OF ISLAM LISTSERV, NOVEMBER 2013: 

Insight Turkey is calling for papers for its Winter 2014 (1) issue with a focus on Turkish Foreign Policy under the Justice and Development Party since 2002. There is a lively debate on various aspects of Turkish foreign policy over the past decade ranging from the strategic depth doctrine to neo-Ottomanism; role of civil society in foreign policy making to Turkey’s increased international role; regional strategic competition to zero problems with neighbors. It is observed that political stability and economic growth enabled Turkey to establish closer political relations with its neighboring countries and expand its horizons in Africa, the Balkans, Central Asia and South America in addition to Europe and US.

Insight Turkey intends to focus on transformation of Turkish foreign policy in the last decade under the AK Party and address challenges that Turkey and its immediate neighborhood face. Continue reading