Mamluk Studies Resources

The Middle East Documentation Center at The University of Chicago

Sixth Conference of the School of Mamluk Studies
Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan
June 15-17, 2019


SMS 2019, Tokyo

The Sixth Conference of the School of Mamluk Studies will be held at Waseda University (Tokyo, Japan) June 15-17, 2019.

The conference will be conducted in two parts and will be preceded by a three-day intensive course on Mamluk Archival Materials from June 12-14, 2019, taught by Professor Emad Abu Ghazi, Cairo University.

The first day of the conference, June 15, will be under the theme “The Sacred in Mamluk Society”. Under this overall rubric, the sacred may be interpreted in a variety of ways, from spaces that were believed to be sacred to those which had any relationship with the sacred, as well as the rituals and/or practices that enabled and maintained the sacred. More concretely, this theme may include anything related to Sufism, the cult of the saints, Sharifism, the history of Mecca, Medina, and Jerusalem, the Hajj, the sacred among Christians and/or Jews, and Mawlids and other social events and practices, amongst other topics. In addition, by including “society” within this theme and by reconsidering the relationships between any of these elements and Mamluk society itself, as well as their roles within that society, we hope to widen the range of Mamluk studies, going beyond the boundaries between academic fields such as historical studies, religious studies, and anthropology. We look forward to papers that will expand the scope of this theme and enrich its content.

A maximum of 12 to 15 paper proposals will be selected. Should a greater number of proposals be received, the authors of those which are not selected for the conference may be offered the possibility to publish their contribution in the proceedings. Time allotted to each paper will be twenty minutes, plus ten minutes for discussion.

The following two days of the conference (June 16 and 17) will be structured in panels, which may focus on any aspect of the intellectual, political, social, economic, and artistic life of the Mamluk period. The panels will be organized into presentations of three to four papers of twenty minutes each. Panel proposals must be made by a representative, who will be responsible for its organization. Please note that in case of cancellation of two papers out of the three (or three out of the four) composing the panel, the panel will have to be withdrawn from the program. Time allotted to each paper will be twenty minutes. Discussion will take place at the end of each panel.

Language: The official language of the conference will be English.

Fees: The conference registration fees will be 7000JPY (approximately US$63) for participants and attendees. A farewell dinner will take place on the last day (June 17) at a cost to be determined. Payment of the fees (registration and farewell dinner) must be received by April 30, 2019 (information on the method of payment to be used will be provided in the first circular, which will be sent in January 2019). Participants must make their own travel arrangements; information and suggestions for accommodations will be provided in the first circular.

Proposals: Paper and panel proposal deadlines have passed.

Acceptance: Paper and panel proposals will be peer-reviewed. A first circular will be sent by January 2019 to those whose proposals have been accepted, and to those who have expressed interest in attending the conference as listeners.

a) Themed day: the papers will be published in a volume of proceedings.
b) Panels: selected papers will be published in Mamlūk Studies Review.

Intensive course: Mamluk Archival Material
A three-day intensive course on Mamluk archival material, intended for advanced graduate students and other qualified participants, will be offered by Professor Emad Badr al-Din Abu Ghazi (Cairo University). This will be held at Waseda University on June 12-14, 2019, immediately before the sixth conference of the School of Mamluk Studies. The course will enable students to develop reading skills in Arabic archival material related to the study of the Mamluk period and provide related contextual knowledge. It will deal with various types of archival material, including waqf-related documents, the Ragusa/Dubrovnik documents, and Ottoman land registers (which include Mamluk land records), and diplomatic documents, among others. The course requires advanced or intermediate level of Arabic reading knowledge. The course will be taught in Arabic.
Since the number of the participants will be limited (a maximum of 12), those who desire to take part in the course are requested to submit a CV, a statement of purpose, and a letter of recommendation by someone familiar with your work to the following email address: by the end of January, 2019. Those who are selected for the course will be notified by the end of February, 2019, at which time information about the method of payment for the course fees will be provided.
The course fee is 35000JPY (approximately US$315), which also includes the registration fee for the subsequent conference (June 15-17). The fees must be paid by April 30, 2019. Registration and participation will not be confirmed until payment is received. Participants must make their own travel arrangements. The local organizer will provide suggestions for lodging at an affordable price.

We look forward to meeting you in Tokyo.

Tetsuya Ohtoshi, Waseda University (local organizer)

Frédéric Bauden, Université de Liège
Antonella Ghersetti, Ca’ Foscari University, Venice
Marlis Saleh, University of Chicago

© Middle East Documentation Center. The SMS logo is based on the lion emblem used by Sultan Baybars.