Annual Conference of the British Association for Islamic Studies

Monday 20 - Tuesday 21 May 2024

University of Leeds, Cloth Hall Court, Quebec Street, Leeds LS1 2HA 


Conference Programme


The British Association for Islamic Studies is delighted to announce the provisional programme for its 2024 Annual Conference taking place in the stunning Cloth Hall Court at the University of Leeds. 

The conference is open to anyone with an interest in Islamic Studies and registration is possible online by CLICKING HERE


Day 1: Monday 20 May 


09:15 - 10:00: Arrival, Registration and Refreshments (Merchants Hall)


10.00 - 10.10: Words of Welcome (Tweed Room)


10.10 - 11.20: Opening Keynote (Tweed Room)


A Book Talk on Nahj al-Balāghah, The Wisdom and Eloquence of ʿAlī

Professor Tahera Qutbuddin (Abdulaziz Saud AlBabtain Laudian Professor of Arabic, University of Oxford)

Chaired by Professor Jon Hoover (University of Nottingham)


11.20-11.30: BRAIS Prize Announcement (Tweed Room)


11.30 – 12.00: Refreshments (Merchants Hall)


12.00-13.30: Panel Session 1  


Revisiting Exegetical Traditions of the Quran (Herringbone Room)

Chair: Omar Anchassi (University of Bern)

Marina Pyrovolaki (Aristotle University) Illness, death, and free will in Quran, Sunna, and early historiography in the second Islamic century 

Ali Aghaei (Humboldt University of Berlin) He is a ‘Sign’ of the Hour:  An ‘Interpretive Alternative’ to the Canonical Reading of Q43:61 in Muslim Exegetical Literature 

Taira Amin (Independent Scholar), Women’s Great Guile in the Muslim Exegetical Tradition 

Azhari Andi (Indonesian International Islamic University), Before Orthodoxy; Revisiting Abraham's Sacrifice Narrative in Muslim Commentaries 


Digital Islam Across Europe 1: The interaction between content “producers” and Online Islamic Environments (OIEs): Preliminary qualitative results (Wool Room)

Chair: Anna Grasso (University of Wales Trinity St David)

Arvydas Kumpis (Vytautas Magnus University) and Egdūnas Račius (Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania), Unforgivable negligence? Reluctance by Lithuanian Islamic collectivities to engage in Online Islamic Environments 

Katarzyna Górak-Sosnowska (SGH Warsaw School of Economics), Mateusz Chudziak (SGH Warsaw School of Economics), Joanna Krotofil (Jagiellonian University in Cracow), The educational role of khutbas in Polish mosques: between Polishness and Muslimness 

Avi Astor, Ghufran Khir Allah & Rosa Martinez-Cuadros (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona), Anonymity and Authority in Online Islamic Environments

Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor (Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations, Coventry University) & Anna Grasso (University of Wales Trinity Saint David), Muslim online producers: navigating the ambivalent visions around digital “influence” 


Challenging Power Relations in Minority Contexts: Responses to Marginalisation (Denim Room)

Chair: Hadiza Kere Abdulrahman (University of Lincoln)

Maryam Kashani (University of Illinois) Zakat, Medina, and Colonial Racial Capitalism  

Christina Verousi (Northumbria University), ‘They consider us lesser, unworthy, uneducated and obtuse’: Insights into gendered Islamophobia in contemporary Greece  

Ummul Fayiza Puthiya Peedikayil (University of Warwick), Muslim Women's Rights and the Codification of Muslim Personal Law in India: Revisiting the Enactment of Muslim Women Act 1986 


Being a Muslim in Britain: Food, Healthcare and Education (Tweed Room)

Chair: Sophie Gilliat-Ray (Cardiff University)

Majdi Faleh (Nottingham Trent University), Khairi Abdulla (Nottingham Trent University), Ethnic aesthetics and Nomenclature of Muslim Spaces in the UK: Restaurants and Shops in Birmingham, Leicester, and Manchester 

Ghazala Mir (University of Leeds), Transforming healthcare for Muslims: legitimacy, engagement and improved health outcomes 

Hanan Fara (Al Quds Academy), Exploring education among British Muslims  

Aisha Ijaz (Edge Hill University), Religiosity and information search behaviour: A two-step cluster analysis profiling Muslim consumers’ convenience food product choices 


Women and Constitutions in Muslim Contexts: Publishing a Special Issue of the Manchester Journal of Transnational Islamic Law & Practice (Cotton Room)

Chair: Fatemeh Sadeghi (University College London)

Ahmad Ghouri (University of Sussex), Transnational Forms of Islamic Law: An Editor’s Mandate 

Homa Hoodfar (Concordia University), Women and the Making of the 2004 Afghanistan Constitution 

Vrinda Narain (McGill University), Constitutionalizing Muslim Women’s Rights: A Perspective from India 

Fatemeh Sadeghi (University College London), Vali-e Faqih and his Female Subjects: Women in the Iranian Constitution 


13.30-14.30: Lunch (Merchants Hall)


14.30-16.00: Panel Session 2  


Architectural Heritage in the New Age (Cotton Room)

Chair: Hossam Mahdi (President of ICOMOS-CIAV)

Samie I. Kayani (University of Liverpool), Saving the Heritage of Makkah al-Mukarramah: The Riwaqs of Masjid al Haram 

Samah Metoui (Tunisia) and Majdi Faleh (Nottingham Trent University), Challenges of Amazigh Heritage in Southern Tunisia: A Survey of a few Villages

Idris Bedirhanoglu (University of Oxford/Dicle University), Understanding Challenges and Opportunities in Analysis of Historic Mosques in East Turkey; Post 2023 Earthquake   


Addressing Contemporary Issues: The Role of Islamic Law and Authority (Denim Room)

Chair: Hadiza Kere Abdulrahman (University of Lincoln)

Dominik Krell (University of Oxford), The Redefinition of the Public and the Private in Islamic Law: Forensic Technology and Criminal Evidence in Saudi Arabia  

Gary Bunt (University of Wales TSD), From Sheikh Google to ImamAI? Evolving Islamic Influence and Authority in Muslim Digital Worlds  

Saleema Burney (University of Birmingham), Is the science vs religion conflict a 'Western problem'? The engagement of Muslim religious leaders with science. 


Interrogating Decolonial Discourse on Islamic Ethics, Power, and the State: Theories and Practices (Wool Room)

Chair: Siti Sarah Muwahidah  (University of Edinburgh)

Muhamad Rofiq Muzakkir (Universitas Muhammadiyah Yogyakarta/University of Edinburgh) and Siti Sarah Muwahidah (University of Edinburgh), Decolonial Critiques on the Modernization of Islamic Juristic Theories 

Mira Al Hussein (University of Edinburgh), Minoritising Islam in the Homeland: The UAE’s Quest to Circulate a Quietist Theology 

Abdelrahman Ayyash (The Century Foundation, New York) and Talal Alkhader (University of Edinburgh), Decolonising Resistance: An Islamic Perspective


The Science of Hadith Across Time and Tradition (Herringbone Room)

Chair: Mansur Ali (Cardiff University)

Zachary Wright (Northwestern University), Sufism and Hadith Scholarship in the Eighteenth Century: the Writings of Muḥammad Ḥayāt al-Sindī  

Haider Hobballah (Al-Mahdi Institute), The Emergence of the Hadith Critique Movement in the Twentieth Century Shīʿī Context: The Case of Abū al-Faḍl al-Burqaʾī 

Amina Inloes (The Islamic College), Eclipses and Lament in Twelver Shīʿī Ḥadīth 


European Perspectives on Gender, Identity and Society (Tweed Room)

Chair: Alyaa Ebbiary (University of Lancaster)

Giammarco Mancinelli (École pratique des hautes études), Second generations and the mosque in Italy: Feminisation without feminism 

Muhammad Tajri (Al-Mahdi Institute), Denying Dichotomy?: The Intersection of LGB Shīʿa Muslims 

Ayesha Ulhaq (University of Cambridge) A qualitative study of Muslim women’s safety and resilience in the face of individual and cultural trauma in Britain


16.00-16.30: Refreshments (Merchants Hall)


16.30-18.00: Panel Session 3  


Digital Islam Across Europe 2: Quantitative approaches to Digital Islam Across Europe (Wool Room)

Chair: Sariya Contractor (Coventry University)

Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor (Coventry University) & Anna Grasso (University of Wales TSD), Measuring Muslims’ social and religious practices online: Gender and Generational specificities in the United Kingdom 

Göran Larsson (University of Gothenburg) & Erika Willander (Umeå University), Measuring Swedish Muslims’ social and religious practices online 

Ghufran Khir Allah, Rosa Martinez-Cuadros & Avi Astor (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona), Digital Religious Practices among Muslims in Spain: Preliminary Results of a Survey

Discussant: Sean McLoughlin (University of Leeds)


Fiqh Across Time: Medieval and Modern Perspectives (Herringbone Room)

Chair: Fozia Bora (University of Leeds)

Emine Bal Dereli (Queen Mary University), The Evolution of Maqasid Theory in the Modern Era: Mohammad Hashim Kamali  

Shahanaz Begum (University of Exeter), Rationalised rulings: al-Shaybānī’s approach to qiyās  

Rezart Beka (Hammad Bin Khalifa University), The Jurisprudence of Reality (fiqh al-wāqiʿ) in Yūsuf al-Qaraḍāwī’s Thought  

Hassan Alrumaihi (SOAS), Codifying Waqf law: An Overlooked Process 


Interfaith Perspectives in Theory and Practice (Cotton Room)

Chair: Sarah Muwahidah (University of Edinburgh)

Wafya Hamouda (Tanta University), Tracking Tannaim and Amoraim Torah Legislations in Sharia Court Records:  a cluster analysis study  

Martin Whittingham (University of Oxford), Contrasting Styles: Three Indian Muslims on the Bible – Shah Wali Allah, Rahmatullah Kairanawi and Sayyid Ahmad Khan  

Nazmin Halani (The Institute of Ismaili Studies), Religious nurture of Muslim children in Multi-Faith families 


Religion, Law and Politics in the Muslim-Majority World (Denim Room)

Chair: Jaan Islam (University College London)

Mariam Abdulla (University of Birmingham), Beyond the state: an alternative religious-political approach to politics 

Andreas Nabil Younan (University of Cambridge) Untangling Legal Identity: Application of the Sharīʿa and the Struggle Against Legal Colonialism in 1970s and 1980s Egypt

Caglar Ezikoglu (University of Birmingham), Divine Discourse, Earthly Politics: The Dual Use of Sunni Theology in Turkish Political Narratives  

Fatima Dhanani (SOAS), Legal pluralism in Lebanon: A failure or a constant power struggle? 


Kalam: Revisiting Classical Perspectives in Islamic Theology (Tweed Room)

Chair: Jon Hoover (University of Nottingham)

Takahiro Hirano (University of Tsukuba), Early Twelver Imami Views on Zaydiyya  

Abdulla Galadari (Khalifa University of Science and Technology), Interpeting Yhwh: A Qur'anic Discourse with Late Antique Jewish Traditions 

Ramon Harvey (Cambridge Muslim College), A Reconstruction of al-Māturīdī’s ‘Missing’ Physical Ontology from his Kitāb al-tawḥīd 

William Stevenson (Saint Paul Seminary), “Classical Political Rationalism and Qur’anic Revelation in al-Farabi’s The Attainment of Happiness” 


18.30 - 19.30: Academic (Un)Freedom in the University (Tweed Room)

What are the responsibilities and limits in how academics respond to local and global events as they unfold in real time? What are the responsibilities of universities in aligning the principle of academic freedom with their stated commitments to EDI, decolonising education and staying relevant in the world?

Professor Salman Sayyid (University of Leeds) and Dr. Maryam Kashani (University of Illinois) share their experiences and offer insights.

Chair and Respondent: Dr Sharaiz Chaudhry (University of Edinburgh)


 Day 2: Tuesday 21 May 


10.00-11.30: Panel Session 4  


Contemporary Dialogues with Qur’an and Sharia (Tweed Room)

Chair: Usaama Al-Azami (Vrije University Amsterdam)

Davide Pettinato (University of Cambridge), The ecological dimension of fiṭra in environmentalist, traditionalist, and neo-traditionalist Muslim discourse in English  

Yusuf Ahmed (University of Oxford), Tadabbur (Quranic contemplation) as a form of ‘therapeutic pedagogy’ in pastoral care at Muslim schools: A case for Surah Yusuf 

Sheam Khan (Cardiff University), Lost in Trauma? Exploring Ideological Influences Present in Qur’an Translations Through the Lens of Trauma Theory


Islamic Art and Architecture Across Time and Space (Wool Room)

Chair: Stefan Weber (Museum of Islamic Art, Berlin)

Yahya Nurgat (Sabanci University), To rebuild or renew? A sociolegal analysis of constructions at the Kaʿba between Ibn al-Zubayr and Süleyman the Magnificent  

Noha Hussein (Nottingham Trent University), The Shifting References of Mosque Architecture: From “the booth of Moses” to Le Corbusier  

Nourelhoda Hussein (Nottingham Trent University), Learning From the Craftsman: An Attempt to Reconstructing the Tradition of Mosque Aesthetics 

Said Mahathir (University College London), Religious Territoriality: Mapping Muslim Religious Spaces in Multicultural London 


Of Coming and Becoming: Muslim Identities in Europe (Denim Room)

Chair: Alyaa Ebbiary (University of Lancaster)

Jaffer A Mirza (King’s College London), The early Shi’a religious spaces in Britain (1960s-1970s)  

Sayed Mahdi Mosawi (University of Edinburgh), Religious Dynamics in Transition: A Study of Hazara Migrants in Scotland 

Akif Tahiiev (Goethe University Frankfurt), Becoming a Shia in Russia: understanding the reasons of Conversion to Shi’ism in Russia 

Thijl Sunier (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Branding Islam: Claims-Making, Knowledge Production and Academic legitimation


The Power of the Word in the Islamic Past and Present (Cotton Room)

Chair: Fozia Bora (University of Leeds)

Samuel Bartlett (Royal Holloway University), Translation in an Age of Empire; Pickthall's Meanings of the Glorious Quran Reassessed 

Kianna Mahony (Harvard University) The Role of Poetry in Furthering Tajikistan’s Efforts of Nation-Building and Identity Consolidation 

Emad Mohamed (University of Bradford), Sentiment Analysis of the Qur’an


11.30-12.00: Refreshments (Merchants Hall)


12.00-13.30: Panel Session 5  


Sufi Knowledge Production in Pre-Modern Islam (Herringbone Room)

Chair: Saeko Yazaki (University of Glasgow)

Faris Abdel-hadi (University of Exeter), The Aporia of Interpreting a Premodern Andalusian Mystic: Ibn ʿArabī’s Religious Pluralism 

Eyad Abuali (Cardiff University), Space, Affect, and Imagination in the Transmission of Knowledge in medieval Sufism 

Zoheir Esmail (Al-Mahdi Institute), Sayyid Ḥaydar Āmulī and the Oneness of Being in al-Muḥīṭ al-Aʿẓam 

Bronislav Ostřanský (Czech Academy of Sciences), Sufi Dreams as a Tool of Spiritual Guidance: The Example of al-Risāla al-Qushayrīya 


Muslim Religious Leadership and Chaplaincy in Europe (Tweed Room)

Chair: Sahmim Miah (University of Huddersfield)

Sophie Gilliat-Ray (Cardiff University), Mapping Muslim Chaplaincy Literature:  An Analytic Review of Publications Between 1989 and 2023  

Hafza Iqbal (Coventry University), The ever-expanding role of the contemporary British Imam.  

Noemi Trucco (University of Fribourg), Between Ideal and Threat? The Subjectivation of Imams in Switzerland

Riyaz Timol (Cardiff University) Between the Prayer Mat, the Pulpit and the People: Lived Experiences of British Imams


Law and Legitimacy in the Islamic Past and Present (Wool Room)

Chair: Mansur Ali (Cardiff University)

Ali Khaki (Al-Mahdi Institute), Taqiyya in Shia Jurisprudence: A Critical Analysis of Legal Theories and Modern Implications 

Ahmed Janahi (University of Birmingham), Changing Madhhab in the Mamluk context

Zahra Azhar (Leiden Institute for Area Studies) Maternal Lineage and Political Legitimacy in the Medieval Shii context


The Future of Islamic Liberation Theology (Denim Room)

Chair and Discussant: Shadaab Rahemtullah (University of Edinburgh)

Walaa Quisay (University of Edinburgh), Locating ‘Praxis’ in Islamic Liberation Theology: God, Scripture, and the Problem of Suffering in Egyptian Prisons 

Ashraf Kunnummal (University of Johannesburg), Islamic Liberation Theology and Decolonial Studies: The Case of Hindutva Extractivism 

Sharaiz Chaudhry (University of Edinburgh), Towards an Islamic Theology of Class Struggle: The Case of Nijjor Manush in London 


Political Islam: Perspectives from West Asia and North Africa (Cotton Room)

Chair: Jaan Islam (University College London)

Aseel Azab (Brown University), (Extra)ordinary Muslims: Islamic politics, traumatic loss, and the heroic turn  

Doha Abdelgawad (University of Leeds), The Transcendental and the Political: The Secular Dilemma in Narratives of the Muslim Brotherhood Members 

Antonella Acinapura (University of Oxford), Violence, Nonviolence, and the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine during the Second Intifada. 


13.30-14.30: Lunch (Merchants Hall)


14.30-16.00: Panel Session 6  


Navigating Power in the Pre-Modern Islamic World (Denim Room)

Chair: Aliya Ali (University of Cambridge)

Yusuf Chaudhary (University of Cambridge), Navigating Power: Muslim Intellectuals and Patrons in Ilkhanid Tabriz (1258-1334) 

Aliya Ali (University of Cambridge), Networks of Power under ʿUthmān and ʿAlī 

Mohammed Ibraheem (University of Cambridge), The Literary Roles of Jews in Tafsir

Paulius Bergaudas (University of Cambridge), Yazīd in al-Bidāya wa-l-Nihāya: A Study of Method and Compilation in Mamluk Historiography


Family Law in in Contemporary Britain (Wool Room)

Fouzia Azzouz (University of Algiers II), Sharia councils and Islamic divorce in Britain: The Shia Experience 

Fatima Barkatulla (SOAS), Changes of Heart: Shifts in the Impact of Wife-First Conversion on Marriage Validity in Islamic Law 

Muhammad Abbasi (Oxford Brookes University), In the Shadow of the Law: Non-Qualifying Ceremonies of Marriages in England and Wales 


Islamic Encounters with Modernity (Cotton Room)

Chair: Omar Anchassi (University of Bern)

Safaruk Chowdhury (Whitethread Institute, London), “Between God’s Gavel and His Gaze”: How Islamic is Sherman Jackson’s Idea of the ‘Islamic Secular?’  

Naz Yücel, The Sultan's Rule of Property in the Late Ottoman Empire  

Mohammad Rasekh (Insitute of Ismaili Studies), Religion and Sharia: An Intrinsic Relation? The Implication for the Constitution of the State? 

Jaan Islam (University of Oxford), What is Salafism? An Intellectual History of Salafī Hermeneutics 


Gendered Identities of Muslims in Britain (Tweed Room)

Chair: Sayed Mahdi Mosawi (University of Edinburgh)

Hengameh Ashraf-Emami (University of Nottingham), Unveiling Identities: Navigating Generational Complexity, Agency, and Recognition among British Muslim Women 

Rabiha Hannan (University of Leeds), Lived Islam, Discursive Tradition, and the Epistemological Foundations Shaping the Lives of British Muslim Women  

Nayyab Khan (Lancaster University), Navigating Change: Unravelling the Narrative of Female Islamic Scholars in the UK  

Fatima Rajina (De Montford University), British Muslim men, stigma and the role of clothes


16.00-16.30: Refreshments (Merchants Hall)


16.30-18.00: Closing Keynote (Tweed Room)


Pulling the Past Into the Present: Islamic Art and the Museum Today

Professor Stefan Weber (Director of the Museum for Islamic Art in the Pergamon Museum, Berlin) 

Chaired by Dr Fozia Bora (University of Leeds)