Upcoming Conference

Muslims in Britain Research Network logo
Centre for the Study of Islam in the UK (at Cardiff University, Prysgol Caerdydd) logo

 British Muslim Studies at 50: Retrospect and Prospect

14th & 15th September 2022, at Cardiff University

A conference organised by the Muslims in Britain Research Network and the Centre for the Study of Islam in the UK, Cardiff University

Though still in its infancy as a sub-field, the academic study of British Muslims in UK institutions of higher education is now over five decades old. Since the 1960s/1970s, research and teaching about Britain’s Muslims has developed and expanded – advancing our understanding and knowledge of Britain’s diverse and dynamic Muslim population in myriad disciplines – including but not limited to sociology, history, religious studies, Islamic Studies, geography, politics, and their various intersections.

Over the past decade or so, British Muslim Studies (BMS) has seen the emergence and flourishing of successive cohorts of scholars from within Muslim communities – complicating and enriching the field by interrogating definitions, concepts and parameters of understanding. This, coupled with the long tradition of engagement and partnership with community institutions, practitioners and grassroots spaces means it is an exciting time for BMS and an apt moment to cast a retrospective glance over the past 50 years, while looking ahead towards future prospects.

This conference will examine some of the main contributions to BMS, and will include a keynote lecture by Professor Humayun Ansari. It will also pay tribute to two recently departed pioneers of BMS: Professors Mohammed Anwar and Ataullah Siddiqui.

The conference will explore emergent research topics and directions in British Muslim Studies, see the full conference programme below.

Conference Programme:  British Muslim Studies at 50

Venue: Glamorgan Building, University of Cardiff, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3WT

DAY ONE: 14th September 2022

10:30-11:00 am arrival, registration

11:00 am Welcome from MBRN committee

11:20 amKeynote lecture: Humayun Ansari (Royal Holloway, University of London) British Muslim Studies at 50: a historical perspective

12:20 pm – Lunch

1:45 pm – 2:45 pm – Remembering Three Pioneers

Professor Muhammad Anwar (from Ajmal Hussain, Warwick University)

Professor Ataullah Siddiqui (from Farooq Murad, Islamic Foundation)

Professor Haleh Afshar (from Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor, Coventry University)

Followed by personal tributes/reflections from delegates (please indicate at payment stage in booking form if you would like to participate)

2: 50 pm – Panels 1 and 2 (in parallel)

Panel 1 – Interrogating British Muslim Studies

Abdul Azim Ahmed (Cardiff University) Anglophone Islam: a new conceptual category

Yahya Birt (University of Leeds) and Fatima Rajina (Leicester De Montfort University): Decolonising British Muslim Studies: towards a critique of identity and belonging

Sabah Khan (Ambedkar University) Studying Muslims in Britain: deconstructing the field

Michael Munnik (Cardiff University) Is it wrong to want to change the narrative? Subjectivity and the Muslim journalist

Panel 2: The understudied in everyday faith and worship

Ummu Eymen Balbaba (Istanbul University) Analysis of the concept of Wilayat al Ulama: Shari’a Councils in the UK

Fatou Sambe (Cardiff University) Centring Black Muslim Convert Experiences in Britain

Qudra Goodall (University of East Anglia) Everyday forms of faith and ethical practice: a case study of Convert Muslim women in Norwich

Laura Jones (Cardiff University) Researching Ramadan in the UK

4:15 pm Tea/Coffee

4:45 pm – MBRN Annual General Meeting

5:25 pm – 6:15 pm – Hanan Issa, National Poet of Wales

Special event with Hanan Issa, National Poet of Wales, sponsored by the Centre for the Study of Islam in the UK, Cardiff University

6:30 pm – Dinner at local restaurants (optional)

DAY TWO: 15th September 2022

10:00 am – welcome/ housekeeping

10:10 am – Panels 3 and 4 (in parallel)

Panel 3: New Approaches in British Muslim Studies

Rahmanara Chowdhury (Markfield Institute for Higher Education) Domestic Violence and Abuse in UK Muslim Communities: Web model of DVA – A Multi perspective IPA Approach

Tariq Mahmood (HMP Whitemoor) Islamic Guidance Programme- A Spiritually Based Diagnostic and Intervention Model

Muhammad Tajri (Al-Mahdi Institute) Evolution of Shi’i taqlid on UK university campuses

Saiyyidah Zaidi (Independent Scholar) ‘Blessed are the Strangers’: Hypothesising Collaboration between British Muslim Studies and British Practical Theology

Panel 4: British Muslim Studies as a space for Agency and Praxis

Sharaiz Chaudhry (University of Edinburgh) Islamic liberation theology: How do those involved in praxis against class and economic oppression use Islam as a liberative tool in the British context?

Katya Nosyreva (Prince’s School of Traditional Arts) and Nevine Nasser (Independent Scholar) Reclaiming Tradition: Creating Transformative Narratives through Geometry in Contemporary Islamic Architecture

Asim Qureshi (CAGE) Refusing to Condemn: a praxis

Asma Khan (Cardiff University) Beliefs and Myths: British Muslim women making sense of their economic inactivity

11:35 am – Tea/Coffee

12 noon Panels 5 and 6 (in parallel)

Panel 5: British Muslim institutions: Issues and innovations

Mikahil Azad (Birmingham City University) Safety in and around the space of the mosque: a Birmingham ethnographic study

Sufyan Dogra (Bradford Institute of Health Research) and Muhammad Zubair Butt (Faith in Communities, UK) British Madrassas and health promotion: Behaviour change in NHS, local authorities, and new horizons for faith based community services

Stephen H Jones (University of Birmingham) Crossing Worlds and Remaking Networks: Negotiating Islam and Science within British Muslim Educational Institutions

Sean McLoughlin (University of Leeds) Three ages of Hajj-going from post-war Britain 1962-2022: independent travel, the UK’s Munazzams (organisers) and Saudi Arabia’s new online travel agency

Panel 6: British Muslim Studies as a space for Co-Creation:

Sadia Habib – TBC

Nurull Islam – Mile End community project

Hasan Vawda – TBC

Saskia Warren: British Muslim Women in the Cultural and Creative Industries

1:25 pm – Lunch

2:40 pm –‘Whither British Muslim studies? What should researchers in the field be focusing on?’ (roundtable discussion with Sophie Gilliat Ray, Yahya Birt and Shamim Miah, editors of new Oxford University Press British Muslim Studies series)

3:45 pm – close

Academic enquiries should be sent to Dr Khadijah Elshayyal, ke3@soas.ac.uk