Composed of a keynote address delivered by Ussama Makdisi of Rice University and five panels, the conference brought together more than twenty academics and policy experts to discuss sectarianism. Conference organizers underlined that they wanted to capture the complexity of sectarianism as a tempo-historically specific phenomenon, rather than a static expression that is explained away as an expression of religious dogmatism.
The organizers encouraged the participants to bring forth nuanced, contextually and conceptually rich analysis rather than sectarianism’s more simplistic explanations that dominate most popular as well as some media and academic analysis today. The conference aimed to unpack sectarian framing of identities and conflicts and expose forced dichotomies created around the concept. For more on the conference, see here.
Friday April 15 – Merten Hall Room 1201
Saturday April 16 – Merten Hall Room 1201
Panel I: Historical and Theoretical Approaches to Sectarianism
Panel II: Sectarian Issues in the Contemporary Middle East
Panel III: Sectarianism & the Shi’ite Minority in Saudi Arabia
Panel IV: Conflict, Sectarianism, and ISIS in Iraq and Syria: Causes and Prospects
Sunday April 17 – Merten Hall Room 1201
Panel V: Sectarian Rhetoric and Politics in Africa, Indonesia, and Yemen