MIDEAST 418 - Islam in/and Russia: Russia's Encounters with Islam and Muslims
Section: 001
Term: FA 2018
Subject: Middle East Studies (MIDEAST)
Department: LSA Middle East Studies
Waitlist Capacity:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

The course addresses the complex history of Russia’s encounters with Muslim communities and states within and outside its geographical and political borders. Starting with Ivan Grozny’s campaigns against the Kazan Khanate that resulted in its defeat in 1552 and ending with the revival of Islam in its various guises in the 1990s, the course explores the two major sites of Russo-Islamic interactions: the Volga Region and the North Caucasus. In addition, relations between Muslims and non-Muslims in the major Russian urban centers will also be explored, especially in light of the ongoing influx of unskilled laborers of Muslim background from Central Asia and the Caucasus. Russo-Muslim encounters in Central Asian will also be addressed, especially in so far as they are related to Russo-Muslim relations in Russia itself. Special attention is paid to the revival of Islamic education in post-Perestroika Russia and its often-uneasy co-existence with secular education supported by the Russian state. The instructor’s first-hand experience of these two educational systems and his professional connections to devotional and secular institutions of higher learning that offer degrees in Islamic studies will enrich the course’s contents. Several types of what is commonly known as “traditional Russian Islam” (i.e., Hanafism, Shafi‘ism, Shi‘ism, and Sufism) will be examined alongside Islam’s various “imported” versions, especially Salafism-Wahhabism and Neo-Sufism. Discussions of academic readings assigned for the course will be supplemented with works of fiction, memoirs poetry and films (in English translation) relevant to the subject of the course.

Course Requirements:

1 research paper (30%); 1 class presentation, 15 minutes plus 10 minutes for Q&As (20%); attendance and participation 15%; a term paper 35%.

Intended Audience:

Advanced undergraduate and graduate students specializing in Russian and Eurasian studies, Islamic studies, and history of Muslim societies

Class Format:

Seminars, films and discussion in groups; the course will be taught jointly to Michigan students and their Russian counterparts at the Kazan Federal University in Tatarstan, the Russian Federation

MIDEAST 418 - Islam in/and Russia: Russia's Encounters with Islam and Muslims
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
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