The CSOC workshop, "Reading into Islamization", will take place from Monday, January 4 until Thursday January 7, 2016 at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva.


The aim of the workshop is to discuss primary sources of diverse literary genres and provenances that pertain to the phenomenon of conversion to Islam in the Classical Islamic period (e.g. historiographic, biographic, legal, exegetical, epistolary, governmental, and polemic, to name some of the most notable examples).

The participants will present one (or a number) of such seminal texts. The text(s) will be submitted (see below) in its original language together with a translation into English and a one page introduction to the text, its genre, author, date and immediate context. The text needn't necessarily be new or hitherto unpublished.

Each session (2 hours) at the workshop will focus on the text which will be distributed ahead of time to all the participants in the workshop. The panel will be run in the following manner: two participants (one of whom will not be an expert in Islamic studies) will give their reading of the text (15-20 mins). After they present their interpretations, the presenter of the text will present their reading and reaction (30 mins). These three presentations will be followed by an open discussion (due to the number of commentators needed, we may ask the text presenters to serve as a commentator in one of the panels as well).

CSOC is planning to put together a reader on conversion which will be a basis for courses on conversion and we hope that these texts will be part of the Islamic section of this reader.

This is an exciting event that poses an opportunity to gather a group of leading scholars at Ben-Gurion University to discuss a topic that has been at the center of scholarly interest for over a century.


Conference Board:

Uriel Simonsohn, CSOC, Middle Eastern History, University of Haifa
Nimrod Hurvitz, CSOC, Middle Eastern Studies, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

For more information please feel free to contact the conference administrator:
Bat-el Gozlan, Conference Administrator