[P6510] Notions of the archive in the medieval Middle East

Created by Ahmad Khan
Thursday, 12/02/21 2:00 pm


The idea of archives has captivated the imagination of historians of the medieval Middle East. A number of scholars, working independently, have made archives central to their hypotheses about law, marriage, politics, religion, gender, and space. At the same time, a critical debate among archivists and modern historians has been raging about the ways in which historians have employed the notion of the archive--a debate that the field of medieval Middle Eastern studies has yet to grapple with collectively. This workshop brings together scholars to examine notions of the archive that emerged among the subjects and communities we study. The presentations shall examine the lure of the archive: why does the archive carry such ineluctable, epistemological force for scholars? What notions and practices emerged in the medieval Middle East around documentation and archiving? How do these change when we consider material histories of these sources? Is there a broader semantic field in the sources we study that can enrich the way in which we employ the term 'archive'? Five presentations shall explore these questions with respect to Muslim, Jewish, and Christian communities in medieval Egypt and Khurasan and shall address a diverse set of actors.


Middle East Medievalists (MEM)


Hist; Hist



Marina Rustow

(Princeton University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Tamer El-Leithy

(Johns Hopkins University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Ahmad Khan

(The American University in Cairo)
Panel Participating Role(s): Organizer; Presenter;

Arezou Azad

(University of Oxford)
Arezou Azad is a historian of the medieval Islamicate East from the coming of Islam in the 7th century CE to the Mongol Empire of the 13th century, and all its various component cultures and societies. Her first book entitled Sacred Landscape of Medieval...
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Majid Montazer Mahdi

(University of Oxford)
Panel Participating Role(s): Co-Author;
Montazer Mahdi, Majid (University of Oxford) - Abstract Second Author