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Textual Sources and Geographies of Slavery in the Early Islamic Empire, ca. 600-1000 CE

Thursday 3 March 2022
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This online conference explores forms and usages of slavery as represented in textual sources from the early Islamic empire, ca. 600-1000 CE. The conference’s focus is on the regionality of the development of slavery as an institution and the lived experience of slavery in this formative period of Islam. The presentations address fundamental questions regarding the transregional slave trade, the social integration of enslaved people, politics and enslavement, and the influence of pre-Islamic forms of slavery on slavery among Muslim communities. By integrating textual sources from the Iberian Peninsula, North Africa, Egypt, the Near East, Arabia, Persia and Central Asia, the conference aims to better understand the complexity of slavery in the vast early Islamic empire.

14:00-14:05 Reza Huseini Welcome
14:05-14:15 Jelle Bruning Introduction
The Persianate World
14:15-14:45 Najaf Haider Sources and Forms of Slavery in the Ghaznavid and Ghorid Empires of South Asia (c. 1000 AD to 1400 AD)
14:45-15:15 Reza Huseini Slavery Represented in Bactrian Documents
15:15-15:30 Coffee break
The Mediterranean and Near East
15:30-16:00 Jelle Bruning The Many Messages of a Muslim Slave's Tombstone from Egypt
16:00-16:30 Youval Rotman Battle of Authority over the Enslaved in Byzantium
16:30-17:00 Matthew Gordon The Samarra Mutiny of 256/869 and the Early Abbasid Slave Economy 



Jelle Bruning (Leiden University), Matthew Gordon (Miami University), Najar Haider (Jawaharlal Nehru University), Said Reza Huseini (Leiden University), Youval Rotman (Tel Aviv University).

Due to unforseen personal circumstances, Cristina de la Puente, Nazanin Tamari and Peter Webb have cancelled their participation.

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