Pierre Alain Baud (2008) Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, le messager du qawwali [Nusrat Fath Ali Khan, the mesenger of qawwali], Paris, Editions Demi Lune.
Pierre-Alain Baud has published a number of papers on Sufi music from Pakistan. Although he began by focusing on Shah Latif’s musical tradition at Bhit Shah in Sindh, he was one of the first Westerners to personally meet Nusrat Fath Ali Khan in the 1980s. He accompanied him on several tours in Europe and elsewhere. Since the book is published for a large audience of French-speaking readers, the approach is more journalistic than academic. He nevertheless draws a useful contextualization regarding Sufism in Pakistan, and the Sufi milieu in which Nusrat grew up. It must be remembered that Nusrat’s most famous hit was Dama dam mast Qalandar, a song devoted to La’l Shahbâz Qalandar of Sehwan Sharif that he converted into a universal hymn of tolerance.
Tazim Kassam and Françoise Mallison (eds) (2007) Ginân. Texts and Contexts. Essays on Ismaili Hymns from South Asia in Honour of Zawahir Moir, New Delhi, Matrix Publishers.
The ginâns are devotional hymns of the Khojas, Nizari Ismailis of South Asia, disciples of Shâh Karîm, better known in Europe as Aga Khan IV. The contributions collected in this volume by Tazim Kassam and Francoise Mallison are offered to Zawahir Moir. Following the foreword by Christopher Shackle, the book offers a bibliography of Zawahir Moir who is without doubt the most knowledgeable expert on ginâns. The fifteen contributions reflect the diversity and dynamism of ginân studies. Among the issues under discussion, are ginâns the devotional heritage shared by the Khojas and other communities in Gujarat and Sindh. Historians also point out the interest of the role of the ginâns in the construction of Khojas identity during the 19th and 20th centuries.
On the occasion of the visit of MIFS members to Pakistan, the French Alliance of Karachi (AFK) hosted an evening with Michel Boivin who presented his new edited book:
Michel Boivin (ed) Sindh though History and Representations. French Contributions to Sindhi Studies. Karachi, OUP, 2008.
The AFK, the MIFS and OUP co-organised on that occasion the second seminar conference on the cultural and historical legacy of Sindh and Pakistan:
Dr Michel Boivin, CNRS (Paris)
Introduction to the book “Sindh Through History and Representations”
Dr Rémy Delage, CNRS (Paris)
Sehwan and Sindh through the maps
Dr Michel Boivin, CNRS (Paris)
Managing the sources for writing Lal’ Shahbâz Qalandar’s biography
Sohail Bawani, Karachi University
Ethnographic Reflections on the performance of the dhammâl at the shrine of La’l Shahbâz
Ameena Sayyid, Managing Director of OUP
Dr. Fateh M. Burfat, Head of Department of Sociology, University of Karachi
Alessandro Monsutti, Silvia Naef & Fabian Sabah (eds) (2007) The Other Shiites. From the Mediterranean to Central Asia, Bern, Peter Lang.
This collective volume is the proceedings of an international conference, which took place at the University of Geneva in 2002. The « Other » in the title refers to the fact that none of the articles are devoted to Iran. It provides a general perspective on the diversity and multiplicity of Shiism outside Iran during the past two centuries. The word Shia is used here in a wider sense, since one paper is devoted to the Alevis and another to Ismailis. The book brings together thirteen contributions, five of which are devoted to South Asia, particularly Pakistan. Of particular interest is the contribution of Mariam Abou Zahab on the politicization of Shiites in Pakistan in the 1970’s and 1980’s, and that of Alessandro Monsutti on the social organization and the role of `Ashura’ among the Hazaras of Quetta (Baluchistan) .
Monik Kervran, a researcher at CNRS, headed the French Archaeological Mission in Sindh (MAFS) between 1989 and 2002. We interviewed her in October 2008 to reconstruct the scientific itinerary that led her from the Persian Gulf to the Indus Valley and the region of Sindh, specifically the site of Sehwan Sharif.
- On the excavation site, Sehwan Sharif
Can you describe us the steps that led you to open new sites of excavation in the Indus Valley? Continue reading Interview with Monik Kervran, 2008
Robert W. Hefner & Muhammad Qasim Zaman (eds) (2007) Schooling Islam. The Culture and Politics of Modern Muslim Education, Princeton and Oxford, Princeton University Press.
The topic of religious education of Muslims has become of interest to many researchers for at least two decades. This volume reflects the momentum generated by a gathering of eminent specialists of the Muslim world, including here Morocco, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Iran, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia. In contrast to the image portrayed by Western media of the Muslim educational system, often described as motionless and a vector of militant and radical Islam, contributors here provide a more nuanced vision. While describing the diversity of cultural contexts of educational institutions, they raise the question of the evolving nature and modernity of the relations between Islam and the State.