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IISS Lecture. Re-Engaging with Abd al-Rahman Jami: An Intellectual History Project

Ertuğrul Ökten, Assistant Professor of History, Istanbul 29 Mayıs University
Tuesday, February 16, 2021
1:00-2:30 PM
Free and open to the public; please register at

This talk is about re-engaging with a project about Jami (1414-1492) and his intellectual mission in Timurid Herat. The original project was completed almost a decade and a half ago in my dissertation. The aim of this talk is to think about how to develop a framework to re-engage with Jami’s intellectual mission. The earlier project had two major shortcomings as a study of intellectual history. First, it did not pay attention to poetry sufficiently. Second, it achieved little to contextualize Jami in the intellectual traditions he was connected with. I would like to reflect on the ways in which one can deal with and incorporate these three issues from an intellectual point of view.
In both poetry and scholarly writings, the challenge seems to be showing how i) Jami is connected to other people/thoughts/ways of expression — contemporaneous with Jami or earlier; ii) the meaning of these connections, and in general Jami’s poetry within the socio-political context of his time.
In my historical contextualization, the starting point will be identifying i) the general characteristics of individual Timurid rulers (e.g. the rationality of Sultan-Abu Said); or ii) periods within the reign of a particular ruler if he has reigned relatively long (e.g. experimentation and consolidation periods of Sultan-Husayn Bayqara). Along with an attempt at developing a framework to reevaluate Jami from an intellectual point of view, another major aim of this talk is to ask for help/advice about possible strategies to do that.
Building: Off Campus Location
Location: Virtual
Event Link:
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: Global Islamic Studies, Lecture, Virtual
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Global Islamic Studies Center, International Institute

The Global Islamic Studies Center organizes a number of public events each year such as lectures, conferences, and films, many in collaboration with other U-M units. Please use our searchable events calendar for information about upcoming programs sponsored by GISC and the Interdisciplinary Islamic Studies Seminar (IISS).