Department of Religious Studies

Late Antiquity Workshop: "The Companions of Muhammad and the Formation of Orthodoxy in Medieval Islam"

Thu, October 6, 2011 | Union, Texas Governor's Room

5:00 PM

A lecture by Nancy Khalek (Brown University)

The historical origins of Islamic political and religious identity have recently attracted the increased attention of academics across disciplines. More than ever before, Religious Studies, Anthropology, and Political Theory are influencing how scholars of the history of Islam conduct their research. One of the most compelling issues at stake is whether a theory of the formation of political and religious identity is traceable to the earliest period of the Islamic Empire. Early Islamic leadership centered on how the early community exercised, legitimized, and contested authority. At the heart of any investigation into religious and political authority in the early days of Islam lie the networks of power and persuasion among the Companions. The question of the authority of the Companions—and the variety of answers to that question—forms the epistemological foundation of the multiple orthodoxies that would eventually come to fruition in the medieval Islamic world.

Sponsored by: the Department of Religious Studies, the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, and the Department of Art History

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