Sep 2, 2010

Call for Papers: Workshop on Language, Literacy, and the Social Construction of Authority in Islamic Societies

Stanford University, March 3-4, 2011
(Abstract Submission Deadline: 09/01/2010)

The Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University invites submission
of paper abstracts for a workshop on Language, Literacy, and the Social
Construction of Authority in Islamic Societies. The workshop will take place on
March 3-4 2011 in Stanford (California, USA) and is a joint project of the
Abbasi Program and the Middle East –Mediterranean Studies Program at Sciences Po
in Paris. Travel and lodging arrangements for the workshop participants will be

The workshop will focus on the processes underlying the social construction of
authority in Islamic societies and the way those processes have been affected by
issues of language and the development of literacy from 17th century and onwards
in the context of peripheries as well as the core regions (specifically, West Africa, the Caucasus, South Asia, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Middle East).

Particular topics of interest include but are not limited to:
- issues concerning print, manuscript and oral tradition
- rise of new media (such as internet) and language
- the ulama's retention of authority through reassertion or, in some cases, reinvention of their relationships to classical discourses
- the emergence of new spheres of religious authority beyond the ulama, and how this is related to evolutions in language and literacy
- the production of Modern Standard Arabic out of classical literary Arabic and its relationship to rise in literacy and consequent devolution of religious authority
- the politics of languages of education in West Africa, between Arabic and vernaculars
- the fate of Arabic as a the universal Islamic language more generally across
various regions
- the rise of English, French, and Russian as authoritative languages of Muslim
discourse in colonial and post-colonial settings
- the development of Urdu as the lingua franca of Muslim communication in India and its relationship to reformist madrasas in north India
- relationships between nationalisms, languages, and universal versus local religious communities

Please submit a brief abstract (not to exceed 300 words) by September 1st 2010 via the online secure form available at The abstract should specify the proposed paper topic, major argument(s) of the paper and the methodology used. Participants will be notified by September 30th 2010. Complete papers are to be submitted by January 14th 2011.

A copy of this CfP is available online at . For questions, please contact
Dr. Burcak Keskin-Kozat at

Dr. Burcak Keskin-Kozat, Associate Director
The Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies
Division of International, Comparative and Area Studies
Stanford University
Email: burcak@stanford. edu

Please quote 10 Academic Resources Daily in your application to this opportunity!

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