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Conf/CfP - War and Peace in Islam, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA

Publish Date: Mar 08, 2016

Deadline: Mar 28, 2016


45th Annual Conference of the North American Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (NAAIMS)
“War and Peace in Islam”

Cosponsored By: Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Saturday, October 8, 2016
Abstracts: March 28, 2016
Final Papers: September 1, 2016

This conference hopes to shed light on the role of religion in general, and Islam in particular, toward war and peace, militant sectarianism and political violence in Muslim-majority nations. The impact of the “War on Terror” in the US and Canada, and the political and religious ideologies on sectarian violence in the Middle East have raised questions globally about Islam’s ability to contribute to the search for peace. For example, debate about the nature of Islam and Muslim identities in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is being seen only through the lens of various political and religious ideologies in the post-Arab Spring political landscape. At the start of the Arab uprisings, restoring dignity in Islamic and cultural values served as a source of inspiration to Muslims in the MENA region, and across the globe. Did foreign and internal power dynamics in the region play a role in sectarian violence? This conference is meant to identify the multiple sources of conflict that have dampened the source of inspiration born out of the Arab Spring, and outline potential solutions to diminish growing militant sectarian violence, encourage peace and restore the dignity of Islamic values.

The global definition and understanding of Islam is tarnished not only by the violence in the Middle East, but also by the ongoing “War on Terror” in the US and Canada. The “War on Terror” has affected Muslim identity and religiosity in North America, and negatively impacted the development of Islamic organizational life of Muslims as minorities. Since the “War on Terror” and various political and religious ideologies in the Middle East are defining what Islam is for everyone globally, Islam is seen as the problem. NAAIMS is committed to broadening the discourse on the underlying causes of violence and conflict in the Muslim world, and identifying ways in which religion can serve as a peacemaking tool.

We invite a diverse range of papers from professors and advanced Ph.D. candidates in the humanities and social sciences that address such themes as the following:

  • History of Political Domination and Imperialism in the Middle East & South East Asia

  • The Role of Colonialism in Wars and Conflicts
  • Root Causes of Terrorism and Political Violence in the MENA &South East Asian Regions
  • Development of Sectarianism in Islam
  • From Pan-Islamism to Violent Sectarianism: What Happened?
  • Female Authority in Conflict Resolution: Religious, Family and Social
  • Role of Youth and Social Movements in Peacemaking
  • Islamist Movements and Peace: From Morocco to Malaysia
  • Theological Concepts of Authority in Governance
  • Muslim Theological Concepts of “Just” and “Unjust War”
  • Role of Islamist Movements in Peacemaking
  • Reason Behind Extreme Religious Ideologies in the Muslim World
  • The Cause of State-Sponsored Violence in Syria &the Rise of ISIS, Mali & Al-Shabab
  • Historical Studies of War & Peace in Muslim Dynasties: Umayyad/Abbasid/Safavid, Mughal, etc
  • Defining Peace: International Law and Islamic Values
  • Developing a Structure for Civil Society
  • Images of War and Peace in Muslim Literature
  • The Effect of the “War on Terror” on Muslim Identity & Communal life in North America
  • Images of Muslims and War in Mainstream North American Media
  • War Reporting in Muslim Majority-Countries (e.g. al-Jazeera)
  • Non-Violent Muslim Scholars and Practitioners
  • The Interfaith Movement as an Expression of “Peace” in Islam

Abstracts (250 words) Due by March 28, 2016: ONLY Abstracts from Professors and Advanced Ph.D. Candidates will be Considered

  • Abstracts will be evaluated according to following criteria: clear data & methodology used, relevance & contribution of proposal to conference theme. Abstracts must include a title, author’s full name, contact information, and university position (Professor or Ph.D. Candidate)
  • Panelists required to pre-register & pay non-refundable fees by May 6, 2016. Online registration will be available
  • Final papers must be submitted by September 1, 2016
  • Send abstracts & final papers to Layla Sein, NAAIMS Executive Director, and Director of Academic Affairs at conferences@naaims.org
  • Direct all questions to Layla Sein

Program Chair:
Professor Tarek Masoud,
Kennedy School of Government Harvard University,
Cambridge, MA

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