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Conference "Patterns of Argumentation in Late Antique and Early Islamic Interreligious Debates" (22 février 2014)

Conference "Patterns of Argumentation in Late Antique and Early Islamic (…)

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Location : Nash Lecture Theatre (K2.31), River Room Level 2 King’s Building Strand Campus
Category : Workshop
When : 20 (18:00) - 22/02/2014 (16:30)
Contact : This event is free and open to all. However, due to a limited number of places, booking is required.

Please register by sending an email to Barbara Roggema (

‘Defining Belief and Identities in the Eastern Mediterranean: The Role of Interreligious Debate and Interaction (6th-8th c. AD)’ (DEBIDEM) is an ERC project which takes place KCL under the directorship of Dr. Yannis Papadogiannakis (Centre for Hellenic Studies/Theology and Religious Studies). This project seeks to recover the processes by which religious beliefs and identities were defined through interreligious interaction and debate in the religious culture of a broader social base in the eastern Mediterranean (6th-8th c. CE) through examination of a neglected, unconventional corpus of medieval Greek, Syriac and Arabic literature of debate.

The workshop ‘Patterns of Argumentation in Late Antique and Early Islamic Interreligious Debates’ brings together a group of experts on late antique and early Islamic religious texts to reflect on this type of literature. We will discuss how religious ideas in the Eastern Mediterranean world (6th-8th c. CE) were shaped by the challenges of rival religious groups, and especially what patterns of argumentation were employed within the genre of religious disputation in order to formulate answers to critical questions from inside and outside the community.
Similar to the scholarly controversies surrounding the Sitz im Leben of early Jewish-Christian disputations, much-debated questions in the study of early Christian-Muslim and Jewish-Muslim confrontation are to what extent literary debates reflect live interactions and to what extent the texts allow us to trace the transmission of ideas between the various communities. What sort of methods and techniques were employed by late antique authors to defend their religion and attack others? How were rhetorical tools developed and adjusted to meet evolving needs of debating with other religious groups?

The workshop includes papers that revisit the question of the relationship between late antique disputation literature and early kalām, from the angle of the argumentative techniques used, as well as from the themes addressed in the texts. Other topics include the definition of doctrine and the representation of diversity in interreligious disputations and question-and-answer literature.

The full programme is available as a PDF here

Confirmed speakers - In alphabetical order:

• Sean W. Anthony (University of Oregon)
• Mark Beaumont (London School of Theology)
• David Bertaina (University of Illinois, Springfield)
• Averil Cameron (University of Oxford)
• Sandra Toenies Keating (Providence College)
• Sébastien Morlet (Sorbonne/Cambridge)
• Yannis Papadogiannakis (King’s College London)
• Ute Pietruschka (University of Göttingen/University of Halle-Wittenberg)
• Marcel Poorthuis (University of Tilburg)
• Michael Pregill (Elon University)
• Barbara Roggema (King’s College London)
• Krisztina Szilágyi (University of Cambridge)
• Josef van Ess (Tübingen) (discussant)
• Peter Van Nuffelen (Gent University)
• Walter Edward Young (McGill University, Montreal)

Organising Committee
• Yannis Papadogiannakis (King’s College London)
• Barbara Roggema (King’s College London)

Mes remerciements à Muriel Debié pour cette information.

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