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Gender in Judaism and Islam Conference

by Jewish Studies Program

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Description

The fields of Jewish and Islamic Studies, both relatively new to the academy, have been significantly reshaped by new scholarship on gender. Beyond merely including women in the discussion, new works on gender have significantly revised the scholarship in both fields, prompting new understandings of nationalism, traditional texts, and religious cultures. This conference brings together leading scholars from a variety of disciplines working in the fields of Judaism and Islam, as well as Jewish and Islamic social and cultural history. While some of our scholars may have expertise in only one of these religious traditions, they possess a broad theoretical grounding that will enable them to engage these concepts in cross-cultural dialogue. Together, they promise to introduce new questions and comparative insights to these fields and broaden the discussions that cut into both Islamic and Jewish Studies. The two fields share a number of common themes, and our participants will address a diverse range of topics, including: gendered readings of texts; the role of gender in Jewish and Muslim nationalisms; biology, science and sexuality; women’s historical experiences within these traditional religious cultures; and feminist challenges to and recasting of Muslim and Jewish traditions. Our speakers incorporate the long histories of Jewish and Muslim cultures and touch upon issues affecting Jewish and Muslim women in contemporary society. The conference will also focus on the theoretical innovations that gender scholarship has brought to the study of Muslim and Jewish cultures.