Vortrag in der SOAS

Artikel vom 26. Januar 2018

Monday 26 February 2018

7-9 pm
Khalili Lecture Theatre, SOAS
IDOLS AND FIGURAL IMAGES IN ISLAM:
A BRIEF DIVE INTO A PERENNIAL DEBATE
A lecture by Dr Christiane Gruber
This lecture aims to explore some of the questions and debates concerning idolatry and figural representation from the beginning of Islam until today. It will focus in particular on the specific terminology used in the Qur’an and Hadith in order to distinguish the semantic and conceptual categories that were used by Muslim writers to classify various forms of art-making along with their associated practices. In the majority of texts, images were not understood as prohibited per se. Rather, their modalities of display and use proved of paramount significance within the perennial debates concerned with image-making, as is the case in all global religious cultures. Skirting the ‚broad swath‘ method, this talk thus aims to pinpoint some the finer issues raised by the textual corpus as it intersects with artworks and paintings in order to demonstrate that practices of figural representation in Islamic traditions most often were (and still are) guided by cultural and political expediency rather than religious or legal principle.
Dr Christiane Gruber is an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan. Her primary field of research is Islamic book arts, paintings of the Prophet Muhammad, and Islamic ascension texts and images, about which she has written two books and edited a volume of articles. Her most recent monograph is The Praiseworthy One: The Prophet Muhammad in Islamic Texts and Images.
Attendance is free but space is limited. Click here to reserve a place.