Department of Asian Studies
Department of Asian Studies

Seminar Series Workshop: "The Case of Pakistan" with Arif Masood and Sadia Saeed

Thu, April 25, 2019 | Meyerson Conference Room (WCH 4.118), UT Austin Campus

3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Muqarna - Mughal Architectural motif upon which Pakistan Monument design is based
Muqarna - Mughal Architectural motif upon which Pakistan Monument design is based

Arif Masood, Comsats University Islamabad, and Sadia Saeed, University of San Francisco, will lead a workshop on "The Case of Pakistan" as part of the Spring South Asia Seminar series.

Dr. Masood will present on "The Mughal Spirit in Pakistan’s National Monument":

The Pakistan Monument in Islamabad was constructed during the government of President Parvez Musharraf in 2007, a time when the country was experiencing severe political and religious tensions. Its purpose was to provide a dedicated space in the capital city to symbolize the nation and its people. In this talk, the Architect who designed the monument will discuss how the cultural and religious diversity of the nation was incorporated into the building’s stylistic and symbolic elements and the degree to which these were inspired by Mughal history and aesthetic forms.

Dr. Saeed will present on "Public Religion and the Symbolic Politics of Citizenship Exclusion in Iran and Pakistan":

The existence of religious pluralism has been a perennial issue in Muslim societies, especially with reference to religious “heterodoxy”. This paper engages in a comparative and historical examination of how Muslim political authorities have historically responded to religious groups that have been regarded as heterodox, especially Ahmadis in Pakistan and Baha’is in Iran. It demonstrates that while there were significant historical variations among pre-modern Muslim empires, modern Muslim-majority states exhibit considerable similarities vis-à-vis state policies towards heterodox groups. The latter states actively exclude heterodox groups as a matter of considered state policy, essentially demanding sameness among “the people” in whose name authority is exercised. By comparing the meanings of religious heterodoxy within and across political forms, this paper makes a case for incorporating and explaining notions of multiple pasts and a globally shared modernity within our accounts of transitions to modernity.

The seminar series theme is "'Peace with All (Sulh-i Kull) Religions': Indo Persian Political Theology and Cosmopolitanism," convened by Azfar Moin, Religious Studies. A light reception will precede the event at 3pm.

This talk is FREE! and open to the public.

Sponsored by: South Asia Institute

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