Webb Lectures Focus on Intersection of Cultures, Past

Cultural identity and interaction during medieval times is the focus of the Department of History’s 47th annual Walter Prescott Webb Memorial Lectures next month.

The all-day lecture series, “Muslims, Christians, and Jews in the Medieval Mediterranean,” will be held March 8 in the Central Library and the E.H. Hereford University Center, and feature historians from across the globe.

“The lecture topic was chosen in part because it’s a timely topic and it’s broad enough to allow presenters and lectures and essayists to explore a longer period of time and different aspects of life between these groups,” said Dr. Jennifer Lawrence, lecture coordinator and adjunct professor at UT Arlington. “Here, we’ll approach the entire region instead of one country or culture.”

Over the past several years, understanding Muslim and Islamic culture, art and music has been a popular topic of conversation on university and college campus throughout the U.S. Lawrence said exploring how peoples of different culture and religion lived hundreds of years ago, half a world away, is especially important given the current turmoil in the Middle East and the “void” of information about certain groups in this country.

“This is an opportunity to present and discuss the long history of these cultures interacting with each other,” she said.

Schedule to speak are Dr. Robin Vose (St. Thomas University), Dr. Travis Bruce (Wichita State University) and Dr. Sarah Davis-Secord (UT Arlington). The keynote speaker is Dr. Paul M. Cobb (University of Pennsylvania), who is also a faculty member of the Middle East Center in Pennsylvania.

The Webb Lectures are free and open to the public. Daytime lectures will be held in the Sixth Floor Parlor in the Central Library; the evening lecture will be held in the Rosebud Theatre, University Center. Guest parking is available in the southwest corner of campus next to Davis Hall.

(Story by James Dunning, COLA Communications)


The 47th Annual Walter Prescott Webb Memorial Lectures
March 8, 2012

“Muslims, Christians, and Jews in the Medieval Mediterranean”


9:30 a.m. – Central Library, Sixth Floor Parlor
“Muslims, Jews, and Converts in the Dominican Convent of Mallorca”
Dr. Robin Vose, St. Thomas University
Introduced by Dr. Amy M. Austin, Department of Modern Languages, UT Arlington

11:00 a.m. – Central Library , Sixth Floor Parlor
“The Taifa of Denia and the Jewish Networks of the Medieval Mediterranean: A Study of the Cairo Geniza and Other Documents”
Dr. Travis Bruce, Wichita State University
Introduced by Dr. Jacqueline A. Stodnick, Department of English, UT Arlington

1:30 p.m. – Central Library , Sixth Floor Parlor
“Focusing on the Family: Ibn Jubayr on the End of Muslim Culture in Norman Sicily”
Dr. Sarah Davis-Secord, The University of Texas at Arlington
Introduced by Dr. Kevin L. Gustafson, Department of English, UT Arlington

7:30 p.m. – Rosebud Theatre, E.H. Hereford University Center
Keynote Address: “Tropics of Conquest: Narrative and Encounter in the Medieval Mediterranean”
Dr. Paul M. Cobb, University of Pennsylvania
Introduced by Dr. Beth S. Wright, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, UT Arlington

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