Collaboration with the Society for Renaissance Studies: 'The MEMO' Online Series

Throughout 2022, MEMOs will be running a series in partnership with the Society for Renaissance Studies where we will host leading scholars of colour in our field, pair them with a suitable member of our MEMOs research team, and they will have a live chat show style discussion on a specific theme. Please see here for an overview of past and upcoming events in this series.

Collaboration with the British Library: ‘Untold Lives’ Blog Series

January – September 2022

‘Untold Lives’ is one of several excellent blogs run by the British Library which showcases some of the library’s fascinating collections, bringing to life the narratives and histories embedded in its archives. The ‘Untold Lives’ blog posts stories from the British Library’s collections twice weekly, bringing out from the shadows lives that have been overlooked or forgotten. Like MEMOrients, ‘Untold Lives’ seeks to shed light on important histories from the past that remain ‘untold’ - neglected, forgotten, and yet to be meaningfully explored. 

Over the course of the next nine months, MEMOs researchers will present our respective audiences with insights from their findings in the library's collections, as well as studies on subjects relevant to the overarching themes of the Untold Lives Blog. Topics will range from the work of medieval female writers, to community and hospitality in the East India Company, to cultural identity in early modern Algiers. 

Each of our #BLMEMOs blogs will be posted on both MEMOrients and ‘Untold Lives’ on the last Monday of each month. The series is edited and convened by MEMOs Deputy Editor Samera Hassan and MEMOs Member Dr. Peter Good

We would love for our readers to join these conversations on social media! You can do this by using our collaboration hashtag #BLMEMOs

Collaboration with Hakluyt Society on the 2021 Hakluyt Symposium

Autumn 2021 

MEMOs was thrilled to collaborate with the Hakluyt Society on their 2021 Symposium, which focused on the theme of ‘Decolonising Travel Studies: Sources and Approaches’. This online event took place on 10-11 November 2021 and was organized by MEMOs member Natalya Din-Kariuki and Guido van Meersbergen from the Global History and Culture Centre (GHCC) at the University of Warwick. The symposium featured a MEMOs roundtable session on ‘Decolonial Orientations: Travel Studies and the Pre-Modern Islamic World’, which was chaired by Hassana Mooda and included contributions from Amrita Sen, Nat Cuter, and Maria Shmygol. A copy of the programme is available here.

MEMOs Seminar Series in Collaboration with the Society for Renaissance Studies

March - September 2021

The Society for Renaissance Studies hosted a series of online seminars where MEMOs members presented their research and works-in-progress in three sessions, which respectively focused on: ‘Early Modern English negotiations of Islam’, ‘Colonialism, Crusading, Commerce, and Christ’, and ‘Merchants, Monarchs and Media’. A programme for these events, along with recordings of the session, is available here.

Book Launch in Collaboration with the University of Liverpool

October 2021

This book launch was presented by the Centre for Religion and Literature at the University of Liverpool’s Department of English, in partnership with MEMOs. The online event celebrated the publication of a new translation of Islam in Victorian Liverpool, a unique eyewitness account from 1895 by an Ottoman intellectual of Britain's first mosque community. The translation was prepared and edited by MEMOs member Münire Zeyneb Maksudoğlu and Yahya Birt.

It not only brings to life the figure of Abdullah Quilliam (1856-1932), the founder of the Liverpool Muslim Institute, but those of the largely working-class converts who made up its community and their daily lives and religious practices in what was then known as England's only "Church of Islam".

In this fascinating narrative, the author, Yusuf Samih Asmay (d.1942), a travel writer and newspaper editor from Cairo, sets out to uncover the truth about Liverpool's Muslims, who had become famous around the Muslim world. The book caused great controversy among Liverpool's Muslims and was later banned by the Ottomans.

A recording of the event is available here.To find out more about the publication please click here.

Collaboration with the Folger Shakespeare Library: ‘Beyond Shakespeare’ Blog Series

January – August 2021

MEMOs is delighted to have had the opportunity of collaborating with the Folger Shakespeare Library on a blog exchange with their well known and widely enjoyed blog, ‘Shakespeare and Beyond’. Like MEMOs, the Folger uses its engaging ‘Shakespeare and Beyond’ blog space to explore archives of rich literary and historical material and to make this material accessible to both academic and non-academic audiences.

MEMOs researchers used Folger materials to explore themes of encounter, religion, race, travel, conflict, performance and culture in the context of pre-modern engagements between England and the Islamic world. Our team made use of the Folger Collections and in particular the Hamnet Catalogue and the Luna database of digital images when writing their contributions for this blog collaboration. You can revisit the blogs and conversations by searching for #FolgerMEMOs on Twitter.