Tuesday, January 29, 2008

SPRING COURSE- The Meanings of Islam in Central Asia

A distribution of: Central-Asia-Harvard-List. The Announcement List for
Central Eurasian Studies at Harvard University

SPRING COURSE- The Meanings of Islam in Central Asia

Posted by: John Schoeberlein <centasia@fas.harvard.edu>

Spring Term Course:

The Meanings of Islam in Central Asia
Islamic Civilizations 160
John Schoeberlein

Spring term, Wednesdays, 2:00 - 4:00 (First meeting: Wed., Jan. 30)
Room: CGIS South S-354

The course examines the changing role of Islam in Central Asia through
history from a multidisciplinary perspective. It considers the
diversity and multi-dimensionality of Islam as it influences social,
cultural, political and religious life. Themes include: Islam and
social order; Islam under Russian and Communist rule; Sufism,
modernist Islam, "fundamentalism" and other forms of belief and
practice; and the dynamic new role of Islam in the region following
independence in 1991.

The following are some of the major topics to be addressed:

1) The historical development and diversity of Islamic civilization in
Central Asia.
2) Islam under the rule of the Russian empire, the Soviet Union, and
independent states.
3) Islam and its relations to other traditions: Issues of conversion,
syncretism, and confrontation with other religious traditions and
belief systems.
4) Islam as religion and belief system: Central Asia's role in the
broader traditions, schools, orders and reform movements.
5) Islamic principles of social order: Hereditary roles, teachers,
judges, healers, Islamic principles of authority, of community, of
family relations, and of government and participation.
6) Islam as way of life: Ritual practice, other Muslim cultural
practices, principles of daily behavior, and the mixture of Muslim
ways of being with Soviet and post-Soviet ways.
7) Islam as a principle and structure of political mobilization:
Islamic opposition, state legitimacy, reform, and "fundamentalism";
Roles of Islamic movements in relation to secular, non-Islamic, or
anti-Islamic regimes.

The realm of Islam in Central Asia is currently undergoing tremendous
change with far-reaching implications for the future of the region and
beyond -- making it a fascinating topic to explore.

Please pass this information on to other who you think might be
interested in joining the course.

For more information, contact:

Dr. John Schoeberlein \ Director
Program on Central Asia and the Caucasus
Davis Center \ Harvard University
1730 Cambridge St., Room S-320 \ Cambridge, MA 02138 \ USA
tel.: +1/617-495-4338
Central Asia Program website: http://centasia.fas.harvard.edu

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