Call for participation/Call for papers on « Holy Places in Islam » (date limite: 22 juillet 2013)

Although Muslim theologians generally condemned the belief in the
intercessory power of
images, places, or objects, the Islamic world was
nonetheless filled with dozens of *loca* considered to be holy. These
places in which people sought a privileged contact with the sacred. The
project „Holy Places in Islam“ will
investigate the modalities through
which a specific Muslim society made holy a determinate place or,
dismissed it. In order to analyse these processes the
project seeks to integrate both material culture and literary
texts. Texts,
such as pilgrimage guides and geographical descriptions, in fact not only
carry important information to
locate and identify holy places, but also
help to reconstruct the discourse which was created around a specific
At the same time material culture reflects how the sense of holiness
was embodied and given substance. The same
material will also be
interrogated in order to explain how a site was forgotten or erased by
The project,
established by Andreas Görke, Mattia Guidetti and Alan
Walmsley is supported by the AHRC (UK), MIRI (Copenhagen) and
(Edinburgh). It is designed as an international and interdisciplinary
network of scholars. Over the duration of
the project of 18 months
(September 2013 – March 2015), participants will come together for three
workshops and
contribute to a database - only accessible to the
participants in the network - which aims at bringing together
on specific holy sites in order to facilitate the research and allow for a
better overview and comparison.
Participants are expected to take part in one or more of the workshops, to
pre-circulate their papers before the
workshops and eventually to publish
one contribution in a final edited volume. Ideally, participants should
also be
willing to share material and contribute to the database.

We are therefore looking for scholars willing to become part
of this

The three workshops are roughly scheduled to focus on, respectively: “Early
Islam and the search for
a model”; “The expansion of Islam and the
emergence of regional patterns” and “Re-interpreting holy sites in the

medieval period and beyond”.

The first meeting will take place in Edinburgh from 4 to 7 December 2013,
the second
meeting is provisionally scheduled to June 2014 in Copenhagen,
and the third to September or October 2014 in Edinburgh.
Board and lodging will be provided. Travel expenses will be partially or
fully refunded depending on the number of
participants in each single

Scholars interested in participating in the network should send an abstract
their research (max. 500 words) and a short CV to the following
addresses by 22 July 2013. Applicants will be notified
by mid-August. AND

Camille Rhoné

Agrégée d'histoire, titulaire d'une thèse de doctorat en histoire de l'Islam médiéval ("Défendre le territoire en Iran nord-oriental - Khorassan et Transoxiane -, IXe-XIe siècle"), Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne.

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