Seminar: The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities

Seminar: The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities

Public Seminar Hosted by the Department of Sociology
Title: ‘The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities’
by Dr. Amanullah De Sondy, University College Cork.
Date: Monday 27th February, 1pm
Venue: Foundation Building, F1-030
 
Abstract:  Discussions and debates surrounding Islamic masculinities are quickly finding their place in the study of Islam and Muslims. Now available in paperback, The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities makes a vital contribution to this emerging field. Rigid notions of masculinity are causing crisis in the global Islamic community. These are articulated from the Qur'an, its commentary, historical precedents and societal, religious and familial obligations. Some Muslims who don't agree with narrow constructs of manliness feel forced to consider themselves secular and therefore outside the religious community. In order to evaluate whether there really is only one valid, ideal Islamic masculinity, The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities explores key figures of the Qur'an and Indian-Pakistani Islamic history, and exposes the precariousness of tight constraints on Islamic manhood. By examining Qur'anic arguments and the strict social responsibilities advocated along with narrow Islamic masculinities, Amanullah De Sondy shows that God and women (to whom Muslim men relate but are different from) often act as foils for the construction of masculinity. He argues the constrainers of masculinity have used God and women to think with and to dominate through and that rigid gender roles are the product of a misguided enterprise: the highly personal relationship between humans and God does not lend itself to the organization of society, because that relationship cannot be typified and replicated.
 
Bio: Amanullah De Sondy joined University College Cork in 2015 as Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Islam.  He has taught Islamic Studies at the University of Glasgow, where he earned his PhD; the University of Strathclyde; and the University of Stirling in Scotland.  After completing his Ph.D in 2009, he moved to the USA, where he taught Islamic Studies at Ithaca College (1 year) and the University of Miami (5 years) in 2010. In his spare time, he has twice served as an umpire at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London and has run six half marathons in Glasgow, Miami and Cork and the Serena Williams Ultimate Quarter Marathon South Beach Miami.