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The University of Southampton
The Parkes Institute

The Grammar of Islamophobia Seminar

17 February 2015
Lecture Theatre C Avenue Campus University of Southampton SO17 1BF

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Parkes Institute at .

Event details

Part of the Parkes Institute Seminar Series

There has been much work done on the difficulties associated with identifying Islamophobia.  These difficulties are manifested empirically when the list of incidents and practices that are deemed to be Islamophobic are contested and conceptually with lingering doubts about the utility of a category of Islamophobia.  Of course, this should be too much of a surprise: the disavowal of racism and antisemitism proceeds precisely from the moment when they become levers for social justice.  Similarly, the deployment of Islamophobia is seen either as concession to the romance of victimhood or manifestation of bullying by Muslim groups and advocates.  The difficulty that any analysis of Islamophobia faces is that like any hegemonic formation it remains invisible, the representation of the world it produces seems to be impossible to evade since the world itself seems to reiterate itself inexorably.  There is a convergence between academic and popular comportments to the problematic figure of the Muslim as a Muslim.  The production of knowledge about matters Islamicate has not only a philosophical or epistemological significance but also demonstrates cultural and political salience.  In this paper, I will not attempt to identify the essential characteristics that make up Islamophobia or the phenomena that it names, nor will this paper argue that about the social construction of Islamophobia and knowledge about it.  The paper will present a grammatical reading as a way of liberating us from a picture of Islamophobia that “holds us captive.”

All Welcome. The Chair of this seminar will be Dr Shirli Gilbert

Speaker Biography

S. Sayyid is a reader of rhetoric, currently based in the University of Leeds. From 2010 to 2013 he was inaugural Director of the Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding in Australia. His main intellectual interests lie in the areas of critical Muslim studies, decolonial political and social theory, and rhetoric. His numerous publications translated into a number of languages including Persian, Turkish, Arabic, Portuguese and Spanish. His first book A Fundamental Fear was upon publication nominated for British Sociological Association’s prize for the best first monograph, however, subsequently it was banned by the Malaysian government. His recent publications include a co-edited volume: Thinking Through Islamophobia and a co-authored book Racism, Governance, and Public Policy. He is a joint editor of the monograph series: Postcolonial Horizons/Decolonial Studies published by Pluto Press, he is founding editor of ReOrient: The Journal of Critical Muslim Studies. His new book Recalling the Caliphate was published in 2014.

Speaker information

Dr Salman Sayyid , University of Leeds. Reader

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