Session Title

Visual Cultures of Death in the Medieval Islamic World

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Special Session

Organizer Name

Luke A. Fidler

Organizer Affiliation

Univ. of Chicago

Presider Name

Luke A. Fidler

Paper Title 1

Makli, Makkah Li, Bustan-i Bahaar: The Many Faces of a Necropolis in Sindh, Pakistan

Presenter 1 Name

Fatima Quraishi

Presenter 1 Affiliation

Institute of Fine Arts, New York Univ.

Paper Title 2

Mudejarismo y muerte: Islamic Architecture in Christian Funerary Architecture

Presenter 2 Name

David M. Reher

Presenter 2 Affiliation

Univ. of Chicago

Paper Title 3

The Burial Fabrics of Fatimid Egypt: The Funerary Context of Early Islamic Tiraz Textiles

Presenter 3 Name

Jochen Sokoly

Presenter 3 Affiliation

Virginia Commonwealth Univ.-Qatar

Paper Title 4

Respondent

Presenter 4 Name

Ethel Sara Wolper

Presenter 4 Affiliation

Univ. of New Hampshire

Start Date

13-5-2016 10:00 AM

Session Location

Schneider 1155

Description

The medieval Islamic world produced a rich variety of commemorative images, practices, and materials. Much scholarship over the past century has focused on specialized forms of architecture such as shrines, monumental tombs, and the lavish mausolea erected inIran by the Ilkhanids or in Egypt by the Mamluks. Less attention, however, has been paid to the broader sphere of death's visual cultures; Finbarr Barry Flood recently noted "a remarkable dearth of serious analysis" of cenotaphs and sarcophagi.

This session queries how we might mine different objects and images made in the service of death. How might, for example, our understanding of death's visual cultures change if we looked beyond monumental architecture? What new configurations of (inter)disciplinary inquiry might yield a fuller accounting of death? Tackling evidence from across the medieval Islamic world (from Spain to Egypt to Pakistan), this session not only interrogates the relationship between theology and art practice, but also explores powerful points of theoretical and historical convergence across the broader discipline of medieval studies, noting both the methodological potential of cross-cultural perspectives and the diverse forms of exchange between populations across the Islamic world.

Luke A. Fidler

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May 13th, 10:00 AM

Visual Cultures of Death in the Medieval Islamic World

Schneider 1155

The medieval Islamic world produced a rich variety of commemorative images, practices, and materials. Much scholarship over the past century has focused on specialized forms of architecture such as shrines, monumental tombs, and the lavish mausolea erected inIran by the Ilkhanids or in Egypt by the Mamluks. Less attention, however, has been paid to the broader sphere of death's visual cultures; Finbarr Barry Flood recently noted "a remarkable dearth of serious analysis" of cenotaphs and sarcophagi.

This session queries how we might mine different objects and images made in the service of death. How might, for example, our understanding of death's visual cultures change if we looked beyond monumental architecture? What new configurations of (inter)disciplinary inquiry might yield a fuller accounting of death? Tackling evidence from across the medieval Islamic world (from Spain to Egypt to Pakistan), this session not only interrogates the relationship between theology and art practice, but also explores powerful points of theoretical and historical convergence across the broader discipline of medieval studies, noting both the methodological potential of cross-cultural perspectives and the diverse forms of exchange between populations across the Islamic world.

Luke A. Fidler