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The Institute for the Liberal Arts

Islam in the Post-Obama Era


Islam in the Post-Obama Era

About this Conference

35th Annual Conference of the American Society for the Study of Islamic Societies (ACSIS).

This conference is being co-sponsored by the Institute for the Liberal Arts and the Clough Center for the Study of Constitutional Democracy.


Friday, March 23 • Gasson Hall Room 100

Date & Time Panel/Keynote
8:30AM – 9:00AM Registration and Breakfast Buffet
9:00AM – 9:30AM

Welcome and Opening

David Quigley, Provost, Boston College

Natana J. DeLong-Bas, President, American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies, Boston College

Kathleen Bailey, Associate Director, Islamic Civilizations & Societies Program, Boston College

9:30AM – 11:00AM

Session 1: Constructing Muslim Identity in the Post-9/11 World

Chair: Dana Sajdi, Boston College

A Study of Yemeni-American Muslims’ Identity During the Obama and Post-Obama Eras
Nahid Afrose Kabir, Georgetown University

Muslims in Scotland: The Making of Community in a Post-9/11 World
Stefano Bonino, University of Edinburgh

Bosniak Nationalism and Bosnian Islam: Theological Roots of Official Bosnian Islam
Mirsad Krijestorac, Florida International University

11:15AM – 12:15PM

Session 2: Shariah and the Public Sphere in the United States

Chair: Peter Skerry, Boston College

The Shariah Scare Industry and the Clash of Temporalities
Steven Fink, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

On Stoning Punishments and Human Rights
Syed Atif Rizwan, University of California, Los Angeles

12:15PM – 2:00PM Break for Lunch and Friday Prayer
2:00PM – 3:30PM

Session 3: The Religious “Other”: Models for Conflict and Resolution 

Chair: David DiPasquale, Boston College

Say ‘No’ to Christmas: An Analysis of the Islamic Fatwa on the Prohibition of Wearing Non-Muslims’ Attributes in Indonesia
Hans Harmakaputra, Boston College

Shia Identity in Cooperation with Sunni in Farsi context: (Case Study of Ayatollah Mohseni and Salehi NajafAbadi)
Sayed Hassan Akhlaq, Boston University

Alawites in the Syrian Civil War: Excommunication (Takfir) and the Nature of Islamic “Orthodoxy”
Ahmed Chehab, University of Detroit, Mercy

3:45-4:45 PM

Session 4: Dealing with Difference: Questions of Law and Policy

Chair: Jonathan Laurence, Boston College

Can Two Opposing Opinions Be Valid? Debates on Legal Pluralism in Modern Islam
Emad Hamdeh, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Turkey’s Relations with the Maghreb States of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia
Michael B. Bishku, Augusta University

5:30-7:00 PM

Keynote Address: Islamophobia and Its Impact on Domestic and Foreign Policies

John L. Esposito, Georgetown University

Introduced by Gregory Kalscheur, SJ, Dean of the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences, Boston College


Saturday, March 24 • Stokes Hall South Room 195

Date & Time Panel/Keynote
8:30AM – 9:00AM Breakfast Buffet
9:00AM – 10:30AM

Session 5: Human Capital and Development: Islamic Responses to Global Problems

Chair: Natana J. DeLong-Bas, Boston College

Islamic Banking and Poverty Alleviation
Mohammed Akacem, Metropolitan State University of Denver

Free Zones in Dubai: Local Havens of Otherness
Robert Mogielnicki, Magdalen College, University of Oxford

Towards an Islamic Environmentalism: Climate Change and the Eco-Pesantren of Indonesia
Michael VanZandt Collins, Boston College

10:45-12:15 PM

Session 6: Challenges and Opportunities for the Future

Chair: Kathleen Bailey, Boston College

Obama`s legacy in Syria: U.S foreign Policy, Refugees and Human Rights
Radwan Ziadeh, Arab Center and Syrian Center for Political and Strategic Studies

Post-Obama Middle East: How Far Will Iran Go in Its Regional Policies
Leila Chamankhah, University of Dayton

New Voices of Islam: American Muslim Intellectuals
Serhan Tanriverdi, Loyola University Chicago

12:15 -12:30 PM Concluding Remarks



Conference organizer: Natana J. DeLong-Bas, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of the Practice, Theology Department & Islamic Civilization and Societies, Boston College



John L. Esposito is University Professor, Professor of Religion and International Affairs and of Islamic Studies and Founding Director of the Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and The Bridge Initiative: Protecting Pluralism – Ending Islamophobia at Georgetown University. His more than 55 books include: What Everyone Needs to Know about Islam, What Everyone Needs to Know about Shariah Law, The Future of Islam, Who Speaks for Islam?: What a Billion Muslims Really Think, Religion and Violence, Unholy War: Terror in the Name of Islam, The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality?, Islam and Democracy after the Arab Spring, Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century. Esposito’s writings are translated into more than 40 languages.

Past President of the American Academy of Religion and Middle East Studies Association of North America, Esposito has been a member of the World Economic Forum’s Council of 100 Leaders and the E. C. European Network of Experts on De-Radicalisation, a Senior Scientist for The Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, and ambassador for the UN Alliance of Civilizations. He has served as a consultant to the U.S. Department of State and other agencies, European and Asian governments, corporations, universities, and media worldwide.


The Conference will take place in Gasson Hall and Stokes Hall at Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Ave., Chestnut Hill, 02467. Visit the links below for a printable campus map and parking information.

Additional Campus Maps  •  Visitor Parking Information