Islam Graduate Research School, Damascus 3-14 May 2010

Islam and Muslims in a plural world: the local and the global in the Middle East, Europe and North America

Organized by:

The Danish Institute in Damascushttp://www.damaskus.dk

Centre for European Islamic Thought, University of Copenhagen

The New Islamic Public Sphere Programme, University of Copenhagen

Department of Near and Middle East Civilizations, University of Toronto

Applications are invited from graduate students working on their Masters or PhDs for up to 24 places on a research ‘master class’ to take place at the Danish Institute in Damascus 3-15 May 2010. The research school will be staffed by four senior academics, one from each of the organizing institutions. Each participant will submit a research paper in advance, which will normally be a draft chapter from their thesis/dissertation, plus an overall outline of the research project identifying the topic, main research questions, theoretical and methodological issues and a tentative chapter outline.

The research submitted should fall within the theme indicated by the heading and may come from any relevant discipline. This includes fields of research such as migration and Muslim communities in Europe and North America, Islam and pluralism (religious, legal, social, political) in the Middle East, contemporary developments in Islamic thinking about pluralisms whether theoretical or locally contextualized, the routes and mechanisms by which experiences and ideas connect localities mutually and globally, especially via electronic media. These suggestions are not exclusive, and applicants will need to indicate how their topics may contribute to the project theme.

The programme will take place over two weeks and will consist of four elements:

  • Four parallel workshops on sub-themes, each led by a staff member, bringing together up to six participants. Each participant will have a half-day (3-hour) session to present and discuss their pre-submitted papers.
  • Four plenary sessions at which each of the staff members will present current research-in-progress for open discussion.
  • A series of discussion meetings with significant and interesting local researchers and personalities of relevance to the field.
  • Excursions to sites and institutions of interest within and outside Damascus.

The programme will be staffed by:

Prof. Todd Lawson, Toronto

Dr Hans Christian Korsholm Nielsen, Damascus

Prof. Jørgen S. Nielsen, Copenhagen

Prof. Jakob Skovgaard-Petersen, Copenhagen

For participants who need to earn credit towards their programme requirements, the organizers are happy to negotiate specific arrangements. The programme sessions will normally take place at the Danish Institute (www.damaskus.dk). Participants will be responsible for their own travel and accommodation costs. Help will be provided to book accommodation. Depending on the quality prices are likely to vary between 50 and 150 US dollars for a single room per night incl. breakfast. Students wishing to go on longer excursions in the middle weekend (8-9 May 2010) can get advice on how best to make such arrangements from the organizers.

There will be a course fee of 450.00 Euros to cover staff costs, local excursions, lunch and dinner Monday to Friday in both weeks.

Applications should be submitted electronically, including an abstract of the paper to be presented, to Ms Line Stæhr at ls@teol.ku.dk as early as possible but at the latest on 1 April 2010. This is also the deadline for submission of the full text of the paper to be presented for discussion. Responses to applications will be sent within one month of receipt (quicker for late applications).