Events Calendar

Nov
3
Mon
2014
Islam in Eurasia @ Lindner Commons, Room 602
Nov 3 – Nov 4 all-day
Islam in Eurasia @ Lindner Commons, Room 602 | Washington | District of Columbia | United States
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Eurasia is often a forgotten space on the radar of the public opinion and the policy community looking at the Islamic world. However, Eurasia offers diversity of Islamic traditions, including both Sunni and Shiite.  Islam in Eurasia has been at the crossroads of many influences, interacting with Christianity, European secularism and Soviet atheism, as well as with Islamic revivalist movements from the Middle-East and South Asia.

This conference gives the floor to a generation of scholars who have been working on the ground to renew our knowledge of Eurasian Islam in its plurality, going beyond the media hype of Islamist radicalization and terrorism. The first two panels will look at the relationship between state and religion in the region and at the place of Islam in everyday life. The second day will explore Eurasian Islamic actors as they interact with the globalized world: they discover other Islamic traditions, enjoy the rise of digital media as a new platform to discuss religion, and a minority engage in internationalized insurgency theaters.

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Monday, November 3, 2014

9:30 am Introduction

Marlene Laruelle (George Washington University)

9:45-11:00am Keynote Speaker

Pauline Jones Luong (Michigan University, USA)
Reassessing Central Asia’s Islamic Revival

11:00-1:00pm Session I. State and Religion in Eurasia

Chair: David Abramson (State Department, USA)

Sergey Markedonov (Russian State University for the Humanities)
Russian State and Multi-Faced Political Islam

Sufian Zhemukhov (IERES, George Washington University)
Security, Religion, and the State in the North Caucasus

Bayram Balci (CERI Science Po, France)
Between Sunni and Shia Revival: State and Religion in Azerbaijan

Sebastien Peyrouse (IERES, George Washington University, USA)
Authoritarian Secularism:  State Management of Religion in Central Asia

Discussion

1:00-2:00pm Lunch

2:00-4:00pm Session II. Islam and Everyday Life in Central Asia

Chair: Pauline Jones Luong (Michigan University, USA)

David Montgomery (University of Pittsburgh, USA)
Islam in Everyday Life and Everyday Life in Islam: Religion and Secularism as Lived Categories in Central Asia

Shahnoza Nozimova (George Mason University, USA)
Female Islamic Lifeworld in Tajikistan: Competing Discourses and Limited Public Spheres

Elyor Karimov (Institute of History, Academy of Sciences, Tashkent, Uzbekistan)
Female Ordinances of Sacred Sites at Modern Central Asia: Traditions and Innovations

Aurelie Biard (Sciences Po, France)
Islam, Individuation and Neo-Community in Kyrgyzstan

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

11:00-12:30pm Session III. Interacting with the World. Travelers, Migrants and Proselytes

Chair: Sean Robert (George Washington University, USA)

David Abramson (State Department, USA)
The Politicization of Islamic Education at Home and Abroad

Marlene Laruelle (George Washington University, USA)
The Role of Islam among Central Asian Migrants

Emil Nasridtinov (American University in Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan)
Kyrgyz Dawatchis: Travel, Dawah and Glocal Narrative 

12:30-1:30pm Lunch

1:30-3:00pm Session IV. Roundtable: Digital Islam. A New Marketplace for Religion

Chair: Noah Tucker (Independent scholar, CAP associate, USA)

Sarah Kendzior (Al-Jazeera English, CAP associate, USA),

Behzod Mamadiev (VoA, Washington DC, USA), and

Wendell Schwab (Pennsylvania State University, USA)

3:00-3:30pm Coffee-break

3:30-5:00pm Session V. From Pakistan to Syria. Trajectories of Eurasian Insurgents

Chair: Marlene Laruelle (IERES, George Washington University)

Jean-Francois Ratelle (IERES, George Washington University, USA)
Comparative Analysis of the Caucasus Emirate Islamic Ideology inside the Global-Salafi Jihad

Noah Tucker (Independent scholar, CAP associate, USA)
The Syrian Conflict and the Transformation of the Uzbek Jihad

Erlan Karin (Director, Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies)
Natives of Kazakhstan in Syria: Routes, Factors, Portraits

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Nov
13
Thu
2014
Cinema Club Film Screening: Pure Coolness @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Nov 13 @ 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Cinema Club Film Screening: Pure Coolness @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412 | Vancouver | Washington | United States
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Directed by Ernest Abdyjaparov (Kyrgyzstan, 2007)

Asema gets engaged to Murat and the two go to Murat’s hometown, where the traditional Kyrgyzstani culture remains. One day, Asema learns of a plan to kidnap his bride for a shepherd called Sagyn. The film comically depicts the “marriage by abduction” that continues to happen in the countryside of Kyrgyzstan. The film also poses questions about marriage and love.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Nov
18
Tue
2014
Between Co-operation and Insulation: Afghanistan’s Relations with the Central Asian Republics @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Nov 18 @ 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM
Between Co-operation and Insulation: Afghanistan’s Relations with the Central Asian Republics @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412 | Washington | District of Columbia | United States
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]with Dr. Christian Bleuer, Afghanistan Analysts Network

Christian Bleuer will give a presentation based on recent field research and his Afghanistan Analysts Network report “Between Co-operation and Insulation: Afghanistan’s Relations with the Central Asian Republics.” The main focus will be on the real and imagined trans-national security threats in this region that cross the Afghan border in both directions. He will analyse the past and present cross-border relations, including trade, refugees, insurgency, terrorism and cultural ties with an emphasis on how these phenomena affect stability in the region.

Dr. Christian Bleuer is a 2012 PhD graduate of the Australian National University. He has spent the last three years in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan researching security and governance with a focus on the connections between Afghanistan and the Central Asian states. Most recently he was worked for the OSCE Academy in Bishkek and the Eurasia Foundation of Central Asia in Dushanbe. Currently he works at the Afghanistan Analysts Network, based in Kabul. His full list of publications can be downloaded at ChristianBleuer.com.

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Nov
19
Wed
2014
First Turkmen Culture Club @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Nov 19 @ 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
First Turkmen Culture Club @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412 | Washington | District of Columbia | United States
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Turkmenistan’s rich culture is less well-known than those great empires who contributed to it, but Turkmenistan has produced its own fascinating – though under-appreciated – art, music, literature, and cinema.

The Turkmen Culture Club welcomes you to explore and experience the creole of deep, desert-isolated nomadic heritage, the ‘Lost Enlightenment’ of Islamic Central Asia, and the influences of European and Asian civilizations and philosophies, reflected through the creative vision of Turkmen authors and artists.

We will be viewing two Turkmen documentary films from Soviet Times directed by Murad Alieyv:

The Story of One Run (1986)

Aura (1987)[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Nov
21
Fri
2014
Re-imagining “post-Soviet” Central Asia: The role of the GCC and articulating geopolitical identities through capital cities. @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412
Nov 21 @ 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Re-imagining “post-Soviet” Central Asia: The role of the GCC and articulating geopolitical identities through capital cities. @ Voesar Conference Room, Suite 412 | Washington | District of Columbia | United States
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]With Natalie Koch,Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

In the newly independent states of Central Asia, geopolitical practices and affinities cannot be understood in isolation from their Soviet heritage. However, after nearly 25 years since the collapse of the USSR, this near-automatic explanation of contemporary politics in terms of Soviet legacies is no longer sufficient for understanding Central Asia’s shifting geopolitics. In this paper, I analyze how geopolitical identities are narrated through urban development schemes in Astana, Baku, and Ashgabat – and in particular how they are increasingly connected to new flows of actors, ideas, and finance from the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Adopting a critical geopolitics approach, I compare and contrast elements of these capital city development schemes in Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, and Turkmenistan with those in Qatar, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. Through this comparative analysis, I demonstrate how region-making and geopolitical orientations unfold not just at the level of rhetorical positioning, but can also develop through the material practices of cross-regional networks around highly specific political tactics, like capital city development. Also considering divergences, I note that although the urban landscapes these tactics materialize are very similar, there are important differences in the underlying political geographic and political economic factors that makes them possible, as well as the political relations they sustain and produce.

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