Scholarly Works - Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

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  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Class struggle in the era of identity politics: The revolutionary modernism of doron tzabari
    (Project MUSE, 2018) Peleg, Y
    From the beginning of its history, the Zionist workers’ society in the Land of Israel was plagued with fundamental identity problems. Chief among them was the tension between the socialist vision of Zionist ideologues and their wish to cast that socialism in a national Jewish mold as well. The blurry lines between socialist ideology and national identity became progressively more apparent as the country matured and developed, especially after the neo-liberalization of Israel since the 1990s. One of the most problematic legacies of this tension is the persistent socio-economic differences between two groups of Israelis, Ashkenazi and Mizrahi, which are often cast in ethnic terms. This article looks at cinematic articulations of this tension and examines the tendency of Israeli culture, which is reflected in films, to relate to the gaps between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim as folklore rather than as a social and economic problem. In doing so, many filmmakers in Israel fail to use their art for promoting social and political change, as many of them try to do, for instance, with respect to the conflict with the Palestinians. The article describes this phenomenon, examines its nature and focuses on the social cinema of writer, director and social activist, Doron Tzabari, as a notable exception to this dynamic.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Authorship, Ownership and Rewriting. Va'iz Kashifi and Abu'l-Fazl B. Mubarak within the Hereditary Line of Kalila wa-Dimna Authors.
    van Ruymbeke, C; van Ruymbeke, Christine [0000-0003-1000-1763]
    In Tīmūrid Herāt, during the last decade of the fifteenth century, the elderly and renowned Vāʿiz Kāshifī (d. 910 AH/ 1504-05 CE) was at the zenith of a full career as judge and preacher, involved in Ṣūfism and celebrated as the author of multifarious works. This is when he produced a new version of the Kitāb-i Kalīla wa Dimna (henceforth KD). He acknowledges the source of his rewriting: a Persian twelfth-century version by Naṣr Allāh Munshī (d. ca. 582 AH/1187 CE), itself a translation of the famous and elusive mid-eighth-century Arabic KD by Ibn al-Muqaffaʿ (d. 140 AH/757 CE). Kāshifī composed his KD version in an arresting style and baptised it Anvār-i Suhaylī (the Lights of Canopus, henceforth AS), a title intriguing for the connotations it holds, as we shall examine below. Almost a hundred years later, Abū’l-Fazl (d. 1011 AH/1602 CE), vizier to the Mughal Akbar (r. 963-1013AH/1556-1605 AD) and statesman in his own right, was instructed to produce the ‘Iyār-i Dānish, (the Touchstone of Knowledge, henceforth ID). Abū’l Fazl’s preface, which Rieu considered “very diffuse,” explains that the work answers to a specific request by Akbar “to re-write in plain and easy language the version of Husain Vā‘iẓ.” He also informs us that he restored in his work the preliminary chapters omitted in the latter. ID was completed in the 33rd year of the reign of Akbar, or 996 AH/1588 AD. Neither the AS nor the ID had so far received an in-depth literary analysis. My 2016 monograph on the AS reintroduces this work into the field, while the ID still awaits detailed study; earlier mentions of this latter text are cursory and provide no useful information for the present essay.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Restoring childhood: humanitarianism and growing up Syrian in Za`tari refugee camp
    (Informa UK Limited, 2017-07-03) Gatter, Melissa N; Gatter, Melissa [0000-0002-8423-9347]
    Of the 80,000 Syrians living in Za`tari refugee camp in Jordan, roughly 44,000 are under the age of 18. This article explores childhoods lived in displacement in this humanitarian space. Za`tari’s humanitarian apparatus believes children have lost their childhood due to past trauma from the war and current displacement in a refugee camp. Based on ethnographic fieldwork, the article explores the ways in which non- governmental organisations (NGOs) aim to ‘restore’ these lost childhoods by promoting youth, enabling agency and refocusing children’s attention on their future return to Syria. Through interactions with aid workers during programming in child-friendly spaces, children learn new skills, expand social circles and develop forward-looking goals. Children are also active navigators of life in the camp. The author argues that by customising childhoods cultivated in child-friendly centres to their individual circumstances, children construct a Syrian identity that is more complex than the apolitical Syrianness encouraged by NGOs and inherently different from one that would have been cultivated in Syria. Against humanitarian discourses of a lost Syrian generation, the author’s material sheds light on a nuanced (rather than lost) generation that is basing its identity on experiences in Za`tari as well as on the idea of return to and reconstruction of Dar`a, its home city.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Arabic Codes in Hebrew Texts: On the Typology of Literary Code-switching
    (Brill, 2016-08-16) Ahmed, Mohamed AH; Ahmed, Mohamed [0000-0003-0175-3058]
    In the late 1950s, Iraqi Jews left or had to leave Iraq for Israel. In the course of their encounter with a new society, with Hebrew as the national language, most Iraqi Jewish authors found it impossible to continue writing in Arabic in Israel and had to face the literary challenge of switching to Hebrew. As bilinguals, Iraqi Jewish novelists have employed Arabic in some of their Hebrew literary works, including code-switching. Conversational Code-switching is traditionally divided into three types: intersentential code-switching, intrasentential code-switching and tag-switching. This paper focuses on the typology of code-switching in literary texts. It investigates Arabic codes used in three Hebrew novels written by Iraqi Jewish novelists. The paper suggests three main types of literary code-switching in view of the mutual relationship between author, text and reader. These are Hard-Access, Easy-Access and Ambiguous Access codeswitching.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    ‘Order’ and ‘civility’: Middle-class imaginaries of citizenship before the Syrian uprising
    (SAGE Publications, 2018-06) Anderson, Paul
    Are calls for civility necessarily elitist, serving to reproduce existing hierarchies of social and political power? Or, can they work to clear a space in which citizenship can be reimagined and new political demands can emerge? This article explores the contradictory politics of civility in pre-conflict Aleppo. Notions of incivility and disorder allowed Aleppo’s commercial middle classes to reimagine what citizenship might mean by expressing discontent with lethargic and repressive systems of government. However, the same language they mobilised to criticise the state also associated civility and order with a specifically bourgeois habitus, which was deployed to preserve existing domains of urban privilege and to entrench the social precedence of urban propertied elites over the dislocated rural poor. Calls for civility may be simultaneously elitist and emancipatory, envisaging new forms of citizenship and public life, while drawing their energy from sources that are implicated in other forms of hierarchy and exclusion. The article considers the implications of this analysis in relation to the outbreak of the Syrian uprising in 2011.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Agronomy and Philosophy in Early China
    (Zhejiang University Press, 2019-07) Sterckx, R; PENG, Guoxiang; Sterckx, Roel [0000-0003-3760-0408]
    The language used to describe agricultural life in early China was of itself a much used medium for philosophical, social, and political commentary. This paper explores how agriculture figures in the language of philosophical discourse, and what the masters of philosophy can teach us about agriculture and the peasant mode of existence in early China.
  • ItemPublished versionOpen Access
    Rethinking the lessons from Za'atari refugee camp
    (University of Oxford, 2018-02-22) Gatter, M; Gatter, Melissa [0000-0002-8423-9347]
    Humanitarian efforts to build a model refugee camp when constructing Azraq camp in Jordan – drawing on what was supposed to have been learned in Za’atari camp – missed crucial aspects of Za’atari’s governance.
  • ItemPublished versionOpen Access
    Hebrew and Arabic in Contact: Deviation and Interference in Iraqi Jewish Fiction.
    (Miscelánea de Estudios Árabes y Hebraicos. Sección Hebreo) Ahmed, MAH; Ahmed, Mohamed [0000-0003-0175-3058]
    As bilingual authors, Iraqi Jewish novelists use Arabic in some of their Hebrew novels, the result of which has been some linguistic phenomena related to languages in contact. This paper discusses the deviations and inter- ferences between Arabic and Hebrew in Iraqi Jewish fiction, asserting that both interference and deviation from the Modern Hebrew norm occur at times under the influence of Arabic. The paper concludes with the question of whether these deviations from the Modern He- brew norm foreground literary texts by Iraqi Jewish authors.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Friedman, Mordechai Akiva, A Dictionary of Medieval Judeo-Arabic: In the India Book Letters from the Geniza and in Other Texts. Ben-Zvi Institute, Jerusalem, 2016. xx, 1017 pp. isbn 978 9 65235 194 4. Book Review
    (Brill) Ahmed, MAH; Ahmed, Mohamed [0000-0003-0175-3058]
    Reliable dictionaries are essential for researching linguistic topics related to Hebrew and Arabic. The study of subjects relating to the contemporary use of these languages is facilitated by the accessibility of the necessary lexical tools. But things get more complicated when it comes to dealing with texts written in medieval or early modern forms of Hebrew and Arabic, or different dialects or linguistic varieties. In particular, there is still a serious lack of dictionaries that enable research into Arabic and Hebrew terms which are specific to medieval Judaeo-Arabic (Arabic texts written in Hebrew script). Yet the study of Judaeo-Arabic texts is not only important for exploring Jewish history and literature in the period from the medieval period onwards, but it also constitutes an essential means of gaining an understanding of Middle Eastern history and society and of Muslim and Christian communities. An accurate and correct reading of such critical texts is also essential for precise linguistic analyses, and it is particularly important to identify rare post-classical Arabic terms no longer used in the modern language and thus not found in classical and modern Arabic dictionaries. Following Diem and Radenburg (A Dictionary of the Arabic Material of S.D. Goitein's A Mediterranean Society (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 1994)) and Blau (A Dictionary of Mediaeval Judaeo-Arabic Texts (Jerusalem: Acad. of the Hebrew Language, 2006)), the Judaeo-Arabic dictionary under review written by Modechai Akiva Friedman fulfils this need.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    XML Annotation of Hebrew Elements in Judaeo-Arabic Texts
    (Brill, 2018-08-23) Ahmed, MAH; Ahmed, Mohamed [0000-0003-0175-3058]
    The main aim of this study is to introduce a model of TEI (Text Encoding Initiative) annotation of Hebrew elements in Judaeo-Arabic texts, i.e. code-switching, borrowing and Hebrew quotations. This paper will provide an introduction to using XML (Extensible Markup Language) to investigate sociolinguistic aspects in medieval Judaeo-Arabic texts. Accordingly, it will suggest to what extent using XML is useful for investigating linguistic and sociolinguistic features in the Judaeo-Arabic paradigm. To provide an example for how XML annotation could be applied to Judaeo-Arabic texts, a corpus of 300 pages selected from three Judaeo-Arabic books has been manually annotated using the TEI P5. The annotation covers all instances of code-switching, borrowing, and Hebrew quotations in that corpus.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Codes across languages: On the translation of literary code-switching
    (Walter de Gruyter GmbH, 2018) Ahmed, MAH; Ahmed, Mohamed [0000-0003-0175-3058]
    AbstractThe translation of bilingual literary texts may challenge a translator when s/he needs to transfer some embedded, foreign codes from a language other than the dominant language of the source text (ST) into the target text (TT). This study analyses the way in which code-switching (CS) is transferred into a TT, looking at the translation strategies for CS in a non-European ST into European and non-European target texts. The source language text is Hebrew with Arabic incorporated into the Hebrew text in different ways, most often using CS. The target texts in the study are in Arabic, English, German and Italian languages. The main aim of this study is to show how code-switching in literary paradigms can be translated into a target text language, and to what extent the original structure of instances of CS is maintained, changed or even deleted in the target texts. The study compares four versions of target texts in Arabic, English, Italian and German, followed by an overview of how the same CS instances are transferred across different languages and cultures. Some problems and issues related to the transfer of instances of CS into the target texts are discussed in view of the typology of the CS strategy. The study concludes with an argument that a better understanding of literary CS terminology regarding both linguistic and creative features is necessary for a better translation of bilingual literary texts.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Go-aisatsu (Address by the Secretary General of JAWS)
    (Japanese Studies Association (JAD), Turkey, 2017-09-01) Steger, B
    Boğaziçi University in Istanbul has the world’s most beautiful campus. In this formerly American University with generous gardens and buildings in New England style at the edge of Europe, you can give lectures looking over the Bosphorus and into Asia. No place can be more symbolic of the 32nd conference of the Japan Anthropology Workshop (JAWS), in which we try to discuss and question our views on Japanese society from multiple perspectives. With almost hundred participants, the JAWS conference was the first Japan-related conference of this dimension in Turkey, and we are very proud to be given this honour, even more so as most proponents of Japanese Studies in Turkey study language, literature and history, not society.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    The Parthenon, Pericles and King Solomon: A case study of Ottoman archaeological imagination in Greece
    (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2018) Key Fowden, E
    What made Athens different from other multi-layered cities absorbed into the Ottoman Empire was the strength of its ancient reputation for learning that echoed across the Arabic and Ottoman worlds. But not only sages were remembered and Islamized in Athens; sometimes political figures were too. In the early eighteenth century a mufti of Athens, Mahmud Efendi, wrote a rarely studiedHistory of the City of Sages (Tarih-i Medinetü’l-Hukema)in which he transformed Pericles into a wise leader on a par with the Qur'anic King Solomon and linked the Parthenon mosque to Solomon's temple in Jerusalem.
  • ItemPublished versionOpen Access
    Approaches to violent extremist offenders and countering radicalisation in prisons and probation
    (European Commission, 2017-01-01) Williams, RJ; Williams, Ryan [0000-0001-6924-8432]
    This paper aims to provide policy-makers, prison governors and prison and probation staff with information on current practice and issues relevant to managing Violent Extremist Offenders (VEOs) and individuals considered at risk of engaging in violent extremism in a prison and probation context. The paper is structured around these two contexts. While in practice this distinction may not exist in some EU Member States, it serves to identify key issues: prison conditions and reintegration strategies, risk assessment, prison regime choices, rehabilitation and reintegration initiatives, and staff training.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Metaphorical language as a battleground for tradition and newness in late Mughal Persian
    (The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2017) Dudney, A; Dudney, Arthur [0000-0002-8978-4299]
    AbstractSirāj al-Dīn ʿAlī Khān, known as Ārzū (d. 1756), made a number of sweeping pronouncements during his impressive career as a poet and philologist in Delhi. He claimed to be the first person in the Persian philological tradition to have noticed the historical ties between Persian and Indian languages. That claim is well known to scholars, but a more obscure but arguably even more important statement appears in the preface of his ʿAṭiyya-i Kubrā (The great gift). He writes that it is the first work to explain “the science of clear statement” (ʿilm-i bayān) in Persian. This article situates this facet of rhetoric in its historical context. By considering several exemplars of contemporary critical discourse, we can reevaluate a dominant paradigm in Persianate literary history, namely, decadence. Modern critics have typically indexed the degree of the apparent degradation in sixteenth- to eighteenth-century Persian literature to its metaphorical complexity. In fact, far from fretting over a decadent and degraded literature, critics like Ārzū were grappling with the possibility of theorizing the integration of new ideas and new metaphors into the rhetorical tradition. Furthermore, the consolidation of rhetorical scholarship in Persian in this period coincided with the expansion of literary production in the north Indian Islamicate context in other languages. Many of the people responsible for translating and reformulating Arabic philological texts in Persian had a stake in both Persian and what would later be called Urdu literature. The implications of this trilingual consciousness have not been satisfactorily explained.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    NEGOTIATING LANGUAGES: URDU, HINDI, AND THE DEFINITION OF MODERN SOUTH ASIA
    (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2017) Dudney, Arthur; Dudney, Arthur [0000-0002-8978-4299]
    “Mindlessly thumbing the lexicon” was my Latin teacher’s expression for being insufficiently prepared for class. (That was at the end of the twentieth century, though it might as well have been the eighteenth.) Once we had a grasp of all but the most abstruse grammar rules, knowing Latin meant knowing the definitions of words even though, except at exam time, there was always a dictionary available to mindlessly thumb. Dictionaries, like the disintegrating paperback Collins Latin Dictionary I used in those days, are ubiquitous and generally treated with a kind of reverence otherwise accorded only to scripture. Dictionaries are of course not sacred texts—no God would be so vengeful as to communicate with His chosen people lexicographically—and yet they are unfairly neglected as objects of academic study. Like other texts, dictionaries should be placed within a historical context and interpreted.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Going native: Iranian Émigré poets and Indo-Persian
    (Duke University Press, 2017) Dudney, A; Dudney, Arthur [0000-0002-8978-4299]
    Iranian men of letters who came to the Indian subcontinent during the Mughal period contributed greatly to the development of Persianate culture in South Asia. Modern scholars who have addressed this migration have tended to assume that Iranians brought authentic knowledge of a Persian mother culture to Indians who struggled with some kind of inferior local product that was replaced by higher quality imported Persian as it was made available. This article addresses the neglected question of what features might have defined Indian Persian and more importantly what ideology accompanied it. We should historicize language ideology rather than assuming that so-called native speakers (an anachronistic concept for premodern times) control a cosmopolitan tradition like that of Persian. The scope for different affinities to language is clear from the experience of Qizilbash Khan Ummid (d. 1746), an Iranian immigrant who was reputedly so aware of the subtleties of Indian music that he would correct native Indian singers.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    After Tomorrow the Days Disappear: Ghazals and Other Poems
    (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2018) Dudney, Arthur; Dudney, Arthur [0000-0002-8978-4299]
    Pity Christopher Marlowe, who had the misfortune of being born in the same year as William Shakespeare. While every teenager in the English-speaking world is compelled to read several of Shakespeare’s plays, Marlowe is just a name, a “not-Shakespeare,” to nearly everyone except English literature majors. In late thirteenth- and early fourteenth-century Delhi, the poet whose fame crowds out the others was Amīr Khusraw (1253‒1325). Writing three centuries later, the historian ʿAbdul Qādir Badāʾūnī compared Khusraw to the morning sun and his contemporaries to stars who faded in his brilliance. The brightest of these, the Marlowe to Khusraw’s Shakespeare, was Ḥasan Sijzī Dihlavī (1254‒c. 1330). In fact, the two men were close friends and fellow disciples of the Chishti Sufi saint Ḥażrat Niẓāmuddīn Awliyā (1238‒1325).
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    The new subversive geranium: some notes on the management of additional troubles in maximum security prisons
    (Wiley, 2018-12) Liebling, A; Williams, RJ; Williams, Ryan [0000-0001-6924-8432]
    In this paper, we revisit King and McDermott's 1990 article on the social construction of ‘control problem’ prisoners and their management in high security prisons, in the light of our recent research on the location and building of trust in contemporary high security prisons. We examine how religious and race identities are now deeply implicated in the construction of risk, and we describe the procedures for and some of the consequences of managing the new risks of radicalization and extremist violence in prison. The analysis is based on observations and interviews with staff and prisoners in two main and two supplementary maximum-security prisons in England and Wales.
  • ItemAccepted versionOpen Access
    Persian Medieval Rewriters between Auctoritas and Authorship: The Story of Khusrau and Shirin as a case study.
    (Brill, 2017) van Ruymbeke, C; van den Berg, G; Melville, C; van Ruymbeke, Christine [0000-0003-1000-1763]
    There exists no English Romance, prior to the days of Chaucer, which is not a translation of some earlier French one. مگوی آنچه دانای پيشينه کفت که دردر نشايد دو سوراخ سفت Don’t repeat what the older sage has said; It is not good to bore two holes in the pearl Amplifying the above statement by Walter Scott, it is possible to say that the corpus of texts in the medieval period – whether in the Eastern or the Western cultural sphere, whether in prose or in verse – is packed with “repeated characters, motifs, vocabulary, episodes and plot structures.” This is due to the fact that a literary work does not appear ex nihilo: its intertextual memory, relating to the subject matter and/or to the style, will be more or less prominent, depending first on the degree of the author’s conscience of the phenomenon and the acuteness of his intention and also on information available to the audience in order to decode the references and resemblances at play. A work always entertains relations with earlier writings, but, as we shall examine, this does not preclude an act of creation and a demonstration of originality by its author. And how interesting is this phenomenon when related to self-conscious rewritings! The porous border between creation and imitation enables a wide spectrum of kinds of rewritings, such as pastiche, parody or plagiarism, citation or adaptation.