HomeThe Complex Influence of Orientalism on Scientific Discourses About Islam

The Complex Influence of Orientalism on Scientific Discourses About Islam

L’influence complexe de l’orientalisme dans les discours scientifiques sur l’islam

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Published on Monday, August 04, 2014 by João Fernandes

Summary

Islamophobia as a form of racism has multiple faces and dimensions. One unexplored dimension is epistemic Islamophobia. Who speaks about and for Muslims is crucial because it shapes the definition of the problems, policies and priorities implemented by states, governments and institutions at both the national and global levels. This conference aims to explore the multiple questions that emerge when we examine knowledge production about Muslims and Islam. This conference will be an opportunity to focus on the influence of orientalism on scientific discourses about Islam and Muslims.

Announcement

Argument 

Islamophobia as a form of racism has multiple faces and dimensions. One unexplored dimension is epistemic Islamophobia. The inferiority of non-Western knowledge relative to Western knowledge creates a global eurocentric structure of knowledge where Orientalists become the authoritative voices to talk about anything related to Islam and Muslims. Who is authorized to talk about Muslims is determined by this geopolitical politics of knowledge. Who speaks about and for Muslims is crucial because it shapes the definition of the problems, policies and priorities implemented by states, governments and institutions at both the national and global levels. Orientalism as a discourse of the domination of the 'West over the Rest' since the 18th century, has contemporary expressions and manifestations. The situation becomes quite complex when scientific discourses about Islam in the West, as well as in Muslim majority countries, reproducing eurocentric binaries converge with Orientalist discourses. The continuities and convergences between scientific discourses about Islam with orientalists’ perspectives are not only in the shared epistemology and presuppositions, but also in their vision about the future of the political-economy of the Middle East and Muslim populations in the West.

We would like to explore the multiple questions that emerge when we examine knowledge production about Muslims and Islam as a research question in this conference. Who speaks for Muslims and Islam? What consequences does this have for both domestic and foreign policy making? What policies at the level of knowledge production should be implemented in order to have a fair and balanced approach to Muslim populations? What are the funding sources of institutions producing the knowledge that states and media use for the representation of and policy making regarding Muslim populations? What role do universities play in reproducing or questioning epistemic Islamophobia? What are the epistemic foundations of the "War on Terror"? 

Conditions of Submission

Presentations should be situated within the frame described above, at the intersection of several disciplines, presenting advanced or ongoing research on Islamophobia. Proposals should not exceed 600 words and should be sent to : hatemb@berkeley.edu

Paper abstracts in French or English should be submitted

before 5th of October 2014.

The Scientific Committee will select papers to be included in the symposium by 25th of October. 

Contact in France: Zouhour Ben Salah: bensalah@ehess.fr

Scientific committee

  • Hatem Bazian, senior lecturer in the Departments of Near Eastern and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.
  • Ramon Grosfoguel, Associate professor in the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Berkeley.
  • Alexandra Poli, Chargée de recherche CNRS, CADIS, EHESS. 

International conference "The Complex Influence of Orientalism on Scientific Discourses About Islam" will take place the 11 - 12 December 2014, at Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris

Jointly Sponsored by the:

Places

  • EHESS - 190-198 Avenue de France
    Paris, France (75)

Date(s)

  • Sunday, October 05, 2014

Keywords

  • islamophobie, racisme, orientalisme, islam, islamophobie épistémique, islamophobia, racism, orientalism, islam, epistemic islamophobia

Contact(s)

  • Zouhour Ben Salah
    courriel : zouhour [dot] ben-salah [at] ehess [dot] fr

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Melanie Falck
    courriel : melanie [dot] falck [at] ehess [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« The Complex Influence of Orientalism on Scientific Discourses About Islam », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, August 04, 2014, https://calenda.org/295965

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