Adab as an Interdisciplinary Pursuit

Adab as an Interdisciplinary Pursuit

In Arabic, adab encompasses multiple fields of knowledge, resisting compartmentalization and circumscription. Adab points to both our modern sense of literature, as well as a much longer prose heritage associated with modes of proper comportment, courtly edification, and eloquence.   

How do authors and readers inhabit different discourses and understandings of adab? How is textual authority in Arabic generated through competing disciplinary senses of interpretation and citation? How does this all relate to literary form? And when isn’t it adab anymore?

The April 14th, 2017 session of the conference included a special roundtable on “Adab and the Contemporary Arab Press,” with distinguished Arab journalists working in Arabic and English in Europe and the Middle East. The roundtable focused on how the category of adab is contested, claimed, attenuated, and/or celebrated in our time by the Arab cultural press.

Conceived of and spearheaded by Professor Muhsin J. al-Musawi (MESAAS), Adab as an Interdisciplinary Pursuit was co-organized by Tarek El-Ariss, Nizar F. Hermes, Elizabeth Holt and Mohammad Salama.

Adab was sponsored by The Middle East Institute and co-sponsored by Brill Academic Publishers, Columbia University Libraries, The Columbia University Seminar on Arabic Studies, Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, and The Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies.