Workshop on “Ethnography of Book Collections in the Islamicate World”, at IRCICA


The Workshop on “Ethnography of Book Collections in the Islamicate World” conducted at IRCICA on 27-28 April 2023 was co-organized jointly with the project MIND (The Muslim Individual in Imperial and Soviet Russia) at the University of Amsterdam. In his opening words, IRCICA Director General Prof. Dr. Mahmud Erol Kılıç described IRCICA’s analytical approaches to archival and book collections involving assessments of the provenances, contents, uses and historical experiences of the collections, and alluded to the Centre’s projects conducted in cooperation with archival institutions in the Member States. The opening session heard Dr. Alfrid Bustanov from the University of Amsterdam, on the “Decolonization of Islamicate Archives” introducing the conceptual framework and objectives of the workshop. The reflection proposed for the workshop recommends prudence in adopting archives as evidence for History. Prof. Dr. Cengiz Tomar from IRCICA explicated the issue by pointing to the two problematic extreme outlooks on archives, i.e., “fetishism” vs. “disregard”. The working sessions heard a rich range of personal and institutional experiences in the formation, study and use of documentary archives and book collections contributed by experts from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Türkiye, IRCICA and the University of Amsterdam, namely Prof. Dr. Ashirbek Muminov (IRCICA), Dr. Shamil Shikhaliev (University of Amsterdam), Dr. Bobur Aminov, Dr. Nodirjon Abdulakhatov, Dr. Nasriddin Mirzaev, Dr. Sanjar Gulomov (Uzbekistan), Dr. Rakhmatshoh Ismoilov (Tajikistan), Rumeysa Nur Şahin (Türkiye).

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