This seminar asks how Islam is represented in literature and other arts. How have people in Africa and the Middle East depicted, discussed, and written systems of belief? Why is there such a fervent interest in Islam now? What is the relationship between “Islamic literature” on one hand and, on the other, literature about the religion? Finally, how do educational institutions such as this university become actively involved in representing Islam and Muslims around the world? To respond to these questions, students will investigate sources from Africa, the Middle East, and the African diaspora. The focus will be on the modern era but readings will include a sampling of medieval Islamic discourse as well.
Undergraduates interested in this course are welcome to enroll with instructor permission. Please e-mail Professor Samuel England.
Authors, directors, and theorists to include Talal Asad, Mariama Bâ, Tahar Ben Jelloun, Abdulrazak Gurnah, Abdel-Hakim Kassem, Saba Mahmood, Ousmane Sembène
African 901: Imagining Islam
Open to advanced undergraduate (instructor consent) and graduate students
W 3:30-5:30pm, 219 Van Hise
About the Instructor
Samuel England is Assistant Professor of Arabic. In addition to Classical and modern Arabic, he teaches Subsaharan African sources in translation. His research focuses on medieval court cultures and contemporary Arabic fiction.