Andrew Arsan is a political, cultural, and intellectual historian and senior lecturer in Modern Middle Eastern History at the St. Johns College, Cambridge University. He is interested in the cultural, social, political and intellectual histories of the Ottoman and post-Ottoman Levant; in diaspora and the trans-regional circulation of people; in French and British imperialism in the Mediterranean and beyond; and in histories of political thought and intellectual life in the world beyond Europe. Born in Beirut, he lived in Paris and London, and previously held positions at Princeton University and Birkbeck, University of London. He authored 2 books – Lebanon: A Country in Fragments (London: Hurst, forthcoming) and Interlopers of Empire: The Lebanese Diaspora in Colonial French West Africa (London and New York: Hurst and Oxford University Press). Dr. Arsan is also the Reviews Editor of the Historical Journal, and one of the co-editors of Mashriq & Mahjar: Journal of Middle East Migration Studies.
Antonia Gatward Cevizli obtained her PhD from the University of Warwick, specialising in cultural exchange between Italy and the Ottomans in the fifteenth century. During her undergraduate degree in History of Art and Italian and her MA in History of Art, she studied in Siena and Venice. She has taught History of Art at Sabanci University, Istanbul and is currently a Course Leader at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London. She has published a number of articles on various aspects of cultural and diplomatic exchange between the Italian city-states and the Ottomans and most recently contributed a chapter to Global Gifts: The Material Culture of Diplomacy in Early Modern Eurasia (Cambridge University Press, 2017).
The title of Dr. Gatward Cevizli presentation is: Italian—Ottoman Exchange in the 15th Century: Objects, People, Skills.
Azucena Hernández holds a Ph.D in Art History by the University Complutense of Madrid with the highest merit, a Master's degree in Advanced Studies in Spanish Art as well as a degree in Physics all by the same University. She is member of the R&D National Project “Al-Andalus, los reinos hispanos y Egipto: arte, poder y conocimiento en el Mediterráneo medieval” (HAR2013-45578-R) led by Dr. Susana Calvo and Dr. Juan Carlos Ruiz Souza. She is the author of the book Astrolabios en al-Andalus y los reinos medievales hispanos and a good number of articles. Her current line of research focuses on the study of the double artistic-scientific dimension of the medieval astrolabes, mainly those made in al-Andalus and the Hispanic Christian Kingdoms, with special attention to their relationship with the material culture of their time, contextualizing them with the astrolabe production in the Mediterranean Islam and medieval Europe.
The title of Dr. Hernández presentation is: “Art and Science in the Medieval Mediterranean. Astrolabes in al-Andalus and the Middle East: cross-references and exchanges.”
Dimitar V. Atanassov has Ph.D. in history from Sofia University. During 2007 and 2008 he was Assistant Professor at Sofia University, teaching Medieval Balkan History. From 2013 on, he works as a Senior Assistant Professor at the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. He has published numerous papers and book chapters, dedicated to medieval history, medieval philosophy, historical narratives and their ideological basis, history of historiography, history of ideas, group identity, national mythologies, uses and abuses of the past, popular history narratives.
The title of Dr. Atanassov presentation is: "Two Opera Representations of the Conflict between Bayazit and Tamerlano, or How Stereotypes were (Non) Functional."
Dobrinka Parusheva, Ph.D. in History, is Associate Professor of theory and history of culture at the Department of Ethnology, Faculty of Philosophy and History, University of Plovdiv "Paisii Hilendarski". She is also Associate Professor of modern and contemporary history at the Institute of Balkan Studies and Centre of Thracology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia. She is author of the book State Elites in Romania and Bulgaria during the Second Half of the 19th and Early 20th Century. Social History (Sofia, 2008) and has published widely in the field of Balkan history in modern times. Her academic interests are in the areas of social history, political elites and political culture, culture and caricature, visual representations, history and anthropology of everyday life.
The title of Dr. Parusheva presentation is: "Consuming Europe in the Balkans, Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century"
Ekaterina Volkova is Head of the PR Department at the State Museum of the History of Religion in Saint-Petersburg, Russian Federation since 2010. She has graduated from the Saint-Petersburg State University in 2002 and holds B.A. degree in Art History. The main fields of her responsibilities at the Museum are focused on the presentation of the museum collections, exhibitions and events organization. She is responsible for all the Internet presence of the Museum (official website, official museum profiles in the Social Media), press communications and institutional relations. She is the author of a range of marketing research publications – museum visitation, spending, and satisfaction patterns and analyses of the museums on the Social Media. She is ICOM member of the special Marketing and PR Committee of this organization, where she lectures on museum marketing across Europe.
The title of Ms. Volkova presentation is: "Interpretation and Presentation of Islamic Collections in Permanent and Temporary Exhibitions. Case Study: The State Museum of the History of Religion"
Eli Avraham, media Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Haifa in Israel. Prof. Avraham is the author/co-author of eight award-winning books including “Campaigns for Promoting and Marketing Cities in Israel” (2003), “Media Strategies for Marketing Places in Crisis and Improving the Image of Cities, Countries and Tourist Destinations” (Elsevier, 2008) and “Marketing Tourism for Developing Countries: Battling stereotypes and crises in, Asia, Africa and the Middle East” (2016, Palgrave-McMillian). He has published more than 45 peer review articles on a variety of subjects in many journals such as Journal of Communication, Communication Theory, Tourism Management, Journal of Business Research and many others. His research interests include: public relations and marketing strategies, marketing places, nation branding, advertising, image repair, and crisis communication.
The title of Dr. Avraham presentation is: "Nation Branding and Marketing Strategies for Combatting Stereotypes towards Developing Countries"
Evgenia Troeva-Grigorova, Ph.D. in Ethnology, is Associate Professor at the Department “Historical Ethnology” of the Institute for Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. She is author of two books (The Demons of the Rhodopi Mountain, and Religion, Memory, Identity: The Muslim Bulgarians), co-author of other two (Minority Rights, Inter-ethnic and Inter-religious Relations in Municipalities with Diverse Population, and Zwangsarbeit in Bulgarien (1941-1962). Erinnerungen von Zeitzeugen), and has published a number of articles on the topics of inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations, cultural memory and traditional heritage.
The title of Dr. Troeva-Grigorova presentation is: "Tendencies in the Religious Life of Bulgarian Muslims after 1989"
Fabio Carbone is a lecturer in International Tourism Management and associate researcher at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations (Coventry University, UK). He started as an archaeologist and developed his career first and foremost based on his strong background in the humanities. Later, his interest in Cultural Heritage Management drove him to the area of Heritage Tourism. Currently his research focuses on the relations between cultural heritage management, tourism and human development, particularly in post-conflict areas. For his commitment in the field of cultural heritage tourism and intercultural dialogue he was recently appointed Ambassador-at-Large of the International Institute for Peace through Tourism (IIPT) and IIPT Special Envoy in Iran.
The title of Dr. Carbone presentation is: "A New Era of Responsibility. Cultural Heritage Management in the Age of Migrations"
Galina Evstatieva holds a Ph.D. in Arabic Studies from Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski where she is currently an Associate Professor of Arabic Culture and Islamic Art at the Department of Arabic and Semitic Studies. She teaches under- and post-graduate courses on Introduction to Middle East Culture and Society, Contemporary Arab Culture, Arabic Poetics, and History of Islamic Art. She was Lecturer in Islamic Art at the National Academy of Arts, Sofia (2001 – 2006). Her publications include the monographs The Arabic Verse (2011) and Islam and the Veiling of Women in the Arab World (2016).
The title of Dr. Evstatieva presentation is: "Religion and Identity in the Post-Communist Balkans: Veiling of Muslim Women in Bulgaria"
Galina Lozanova, Ph.D., is Associate Professor in the Department of Comparative Folklore Studies at the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. She has authored numerous papers and articles on the Islamic ritual and narrative traditions of the Pomaks. Her major work is the book The Creation in the Oral Tradition of Muslim Bulgarians (Sofia, 2008).
The title of Dr. Lozanova presentation is:"The Giant Audj Ibn Anak in Oral Muslim Tradition"
Georgeta Nazarska, Ph.D. is Full Professor of Social and Cultural History at the State University of Library Studies and Information Technologies, Sofia. She received her MA in History (1993) and Ph.D. in Modern and Contemporary History (1996) from the Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”. She specialized in the USA, Hungary and France. Her research interests are in the fields of social history, sociology of religion, and ethnic and religious minorities. Dr. Nazarska is member of the International Society for the Sociology of Religion (ISSR), the International Association for Southeast European Anthropology (InASEA), and the European Academy of Religion. Her main publications include (in Bulgrian): The Bulgarian State and its Minorities, 1879-1885. Sofia: LIK, 1999; The University Education and Bulgarian Women, 1879-1944, Sofia: IMIR, 2003; History of Religious Denominations in Bulgaria, Sofia: Za bukvite-O pismeneh, 2009; and Minority Cultural Heritage in Bulgaria: Preservation, Conservation and Socialization, Sofia: Za bukvite-O pismeneh, 2014.
The title of Dr. Nazarska presentation is: "Traveling to the Orient: Tourism, Trips, and Pilgrimages of Bulgarians in the Middle East in the First Half of the 20th Century"
Iva Kyurkchieva, Ph.D. in Ethnology, is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum – Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Her major interests are in the area of interrelations among ethnic groups in Bulgaria, cultural heritage and state minority policies. She is author of many articles on these topics (Religious Dress Codes: the Bulgarian Case. In: Religion in Public Space: A European Perspective. (Cultural Diversity and Law in Association with Religare). Ferrari, S., Pastorelli, S. (Eds.). Routledge (2016), in co-authorship; Minority Rights, Inter-Ethnic and Inter-Religious Relations in Municipalities with Diverse Population Regions, IMIR (2008), in co-authorship), as well as of the monographic work The World of Bulgarian Muslims from the Teteven Region – Transition to Modernity, IMIR (2004).
The title of Dr. Kyurikchieva presentation is: "Cultural Heritage, Memory and Identity – an Example from Eastern Bulgaria"
Maurizio Massaiu is associate researcher of the Cordoba Near East Research Unit of the University of Cordoba (Spain). He graduated in Italy (Sicily) with a degree in Conservation of Cultural Heritage and undertook postgraduate and doctoral studies in Islamic Art and Archaeology in Spain (University of Granada), focusing on the integration of oriental elements into the art and architecture of medieval Italy, especially in Norman times. His main field of interest is the study of the artistic interrelations of the west Mediterranean area and the Middle East, regarded as a manifestation of the wider process of cultural exchange in the High Middle Ages.
The title of Dr. Massaui presentation is: "Artistic Interrelations and Exchanges between the East and the West in the Medieval Mediterranean"
Mavis Hooi is a Master's student in Ethnic and Migration Studies at Linköping University's Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society (REMESO), and has a BA in Tourism Studies with emphasis on Cultural and Natural Heritage. She is interested in examining discourses on migration and racialization in Europe and Asia, and their effects; decoloniality, critical consciousness and solidarity movements; and examining dance and other artistic and cultural phenomena through the perspectives of post-colonialism and gender, among others.
The title of Ms. Hooi presentation is: "Oriental(ist) Fantasy: Western imaginations of an Eastern dance and the Orient"
Michael A. Di Giovine is Associate Professor of Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at West Chester University of Pennsylvania (USA), and an Honorary Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In addition to teaching introductory courses in cultural anthropology, he teaches courses in museum exhibit design and management, cultural heritage, tourism, and religion He sits on the executive board of the American Anthropological Association and has been active in tourism and heritage studies there. Michael has a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University. He has earned his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Chicago. Michael’s research interests lie at the intersection of global mobilities (tourism/pilgrimage, and immigration), heritage, development, foodways, and comparative religious movements. He is author of The Heritage-scape:UNESCO, World Heritage and Tourism and (with Ronda Brulotte), he has co-edited Edible Identities: Food as Cultural Heritage.
The title of Dr. Di Giovine presentation is: "The Seduction or Creation of Otherness? Tourism, the Orient, and UNESCO's World Heritage Program"
Michal Dziewulski received his Master of Art in History at the Jagiellonian University. He is curator of the military collection at the National Museum in Krakow, Poland. In his studies he is concentrating on intercultural exchanges and oriental influences in Europe. As arms and armor specialist he is working on iconography of arms in Central-Eastern Europe as well as on genealogy of Polish arms and armor in 16th-18th centuries. Member and treasurer of the ICOM-ICOMAM (International Committee for Museums and Collections of Arms and Military History) and president of Krakow branch of the Association of the Lovers of Old Arms and Uniforms.
The title of Dr. Dziewulski presentation is: "From War-Booty to National Symbol. Perception of 17th-18th Century Ottoman Luxury Goods in Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Its Role in Shaping Polish Self-consciousness"
Mike Carr (PhD London) is a Leverhulme Research Fellow and Lecturer in Late Medieval History at the University of Edinburgh. His research and teaching focuses on the Mediterranean, c.1000-1500, especially the interactions between Byzantium, the Islamic world and the Latin West. These are themes that he has explored in his book Merchant Crusaders in the Aegean, 1291-1352 (Boydell & Brewer, 2015) and several articles and book chapters. He is co-editor of the volumes Contact and Conflict in Frankish Greece and the Aegean, 1204-1453 (Ashgate, 2014) and The Military Orders, Volume 6.1-2: Conflict and Culture (Routledge, 2016). His current project is titled Managing Otherness: Papal Permissions for Trade with the “Infidel”, 1342-1394 and hopes to demonstrate the complexities of western attitudes towards Islam by exploring how the papacy sought to broker and control contacts with Muslims, rather than halt them altogether as is often assumed in the scholarship.
The title of Dr. Carr presentation is: "Religion and Trade in the Medieval Mediterranean"
Nikolai Vukov is Associate Professor at the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum – Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, and visiting professor at Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” and Plovdiv University “Paissii Hilendarski.” He has Ph.D. in folklore studies from the Institute of Folklore in Sofia, and a Ph.D. in modern history from Central European University – Budapest. Nikolai Vukov has held specializations at many universities and research institutes: Wissenschaftskoleg – Berlin, Musée des sciences de l’homme – Paris, American Research Institute in Turkey – Istanbul, etc. Currently he is a fellow within “Teaching Europe” Fellowship Program of the Center for Advanced Studies – Sofia and New Europe College – Bucharest. In 2014-2017 he has been Bulgarian representative in the Intergovernmental Committee of UNESCO for Intangible Cultural Heritage. Nikolai Vukov is author and editor of several books and has published numerous articles on memory and commemorations, monuments and museums, cultural heritage and 20th century history.
The title of Dr. Vukov presentation is: "Dreaming the Orient"
Olga Bush (Ph. D., Institute of Fine Arts, New York University) is a Visiting Scholar at Vassar College and a Visiting Associate Professor of Islamic Art and Architecture at Bard College. She has received national and international awards, including fellowships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and at the Kunsthistorisches Institut-Max Planck Institut in Florence, for her work on medieval Muslim Spain, cross-cultural interactions in the medieval Mediterranean, and modern European and American Orientalism. She has published numerous articles, and co-edited with Avinoam Shalem, Gazing Otherwise: Modalities of Seeing in and Beyond the Lands of Islam (Brill, 2015). Her most recent work, titled Reframing the Alhambra: Architecture, Poetry, Textiles and Court Ceremonial (Edinburgh University Press, 2018) is a study of the interrelationship between diverse artistic media in the integrated aesthetic of both the architecture and court ceremonial in one of the most important monuments of Islamic art.
The title of Dr. Bush presentation is: "Neo-Islamic Architecture and the Sense of Place: the Early 20th C. Train Station in Toledo"
Petar Petrov, Ph.D., is Associate Professor at the Institute for Ethnology and Folklore Studies with Ethnographic Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. His main research interests are related with cultural change, transformations during socialism and post-socialism, Europeanization processes, agricultural issues, political culture, identity management, stereotypes, mental images, rituals, and sports and games. His current projects focus on land-use and landscape changes, gardening, and human-plant relationships.
The title of the presentation of Dr. Petrov is: "Oil Wrestling: a Game with Multifarious Cultural Connections"
Qaisra Khan began her studies with a degree in Law and an MPhil in Oriental Studies both from Cambridge University. After which she moved into a career of Financial Consulting. Five years later she pursued her passion in Islamic Art by embarking on roles at Christie's Auctioneers and the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Qatar. Her most important role came with the seminal Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam exhibition at the British Museum from 2010-2012; where, as Project Curator, she worked in the curatorial development and delivery of the exhibition as well as extensively on the community outreach programme. Currently she is an Independent Curator at the Nasser.D.Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, working on a multi-volume publication entitled “Hajj and The Arts of Pilgrimage” which will focus on the ‘Arts of Pilgrimage Collection’, one of the largest and most important of its kind.
The title of Ms. Khan presentation is: "The British Museum and British Muslims: Hajj- Journey to the Heart of Islam, a case study"
Sami de Giosa was first a Fellow and Research Associate at the Khalili Research Centre, University of Oxford, having previously worked at the British Museum as a Project Curator. He is now a Research Fellow at SOAS, University of London. Sami completed his PhD in Islamic art at SOAS with a thesis on the revival of art and architecture in Cairo under Sultan Qaytbay in the late Mamluk period. He has also worked on museum projects in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. His publications include articles on the production of ceramics in Egypt and Syria during the 15th century and on the use of Christian symbols in Mamluk architecture. At the moment Sami is working on a publication on the Manial Palace in Cairo which is also partly the subject of his presentation at the Conference.
The title of Dr. de Giosa presentation is: "Prince Mohammed Ali Tewfik and the Manyal Palace: a Scholarly Prince and his Palace-Museum between Europe and the Middle East."
Simeon Evstatiev is Professor of Middle Eastern History and Islamic Studies at Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski where he is also Chair of the Graduate Program in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies as well as Director of the University Center for the Study of Religions. He has been a 2013–2014 Visiting Professor at the History Department of Princeton University. As Gerda Henkel Fellow (2016–2018), he is affiliated as a Research Associate to the Leibnitz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) in Berlin. His books and other publications deal with aspects of Islamic history, such as religion and boundaries, Salafism, Islamic scholarly tradition, Islam in the Balkans, Islam and the public sphere, religious authority in Islam, as well as with political, social, and intellectual tensions arising from questions of religious identity. A documentary released at the L.I.S.A. Scientific Portal in 2017 features the ongoing research of Simeon Evstatiev on Salafism in Islamic history, theology and law.
The title of Dr. Evstatiev presentation is: "The Meaning of Differences: Some Notes on Religion and Boundaries in the Classical Islamic Scholarly Tradition"
Stefan Dechev, Ph.D is Associate Professor at “Neofit Rilski” South-West University. He participated in a number of research projects and attended various international conferences. Among his recent publications are: From Istanbul to Sarajevo via Belgrade: A Bulgarian Cookbook from 1874 – In: Jianu, A., V. Barbu (eds.), Earthly Delights. Economies and Cultures of Food in Ottoman and Danubian Europe, c. 1500-1900 (Leiden, 2018); “Procession of Civilization” – the First Bulgarian Istanbul Cookbook from 1870 and the Road to Modernity. – In: Schull, K., S. Faroqhi (eds.), Rethinking Late Ottoman Civilization (Edinburgh, 2018); Shopska salat: The Road from a European Innovation to the National Culinary Symbol. – In: From Kebab to Ćevapčići. Eating Practices in Ottoman Europe” Interdisziplinäre Studien zum Östlichen Europa (Harrassowitz Wiesbaden, 2017); “Between Slavs and Old Bulgars: “Ancestors”, “Race” and Identity in Late Nineteenth-Century. – In: Geary, P., G. Klaniczay, eds., Manufacturing Middle Ages. Entangled History of Medievalism in Nineteenth-century Europe (Leiden, 2013).
The title of Dr. Dechev presentation is: "Food and Foodways in Ottoman Bulgaria – Europe-Orient Entanglements"
Tsvete Lazova, Ph.D., is Associate Professor in history and theory of culture in the Department of Anthropology at the New Bulgarian University (NBU). She received her MA in classical studies and Ph.D. in history from “St. Kliment Ohridski” University of Sofia. Her research interests include history and theory of anthropology and archaeology; cultural studies; the politics in archaeological practice and its commoditization in the management of the cultural heritage; construction of media narratives on archeology of antiquity embedding them in the collective imagination; reflexivity in research practice, professional, and ethical responsibilities in archaeological practice of antiquity. She is the author of the book Antiquity, Archaeology and National Imagination: Anthropological Perspectives (2016) and also of a number of articles and courses taught in different programs at NBU.
The title of Dr. Lazova presentation is: "Consuming Classical Antiquity in Bulgaria: Ideological Constructions of National Imagination"
Yelena Muzykina holds a Ph.D. in social philosophy from People’s Friendship University of Russia, a Master degree in Cross-Cultural Studies from Andrews University (USA) and B.A. degrees in History, English, Economy, and Theology. She is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Foreign Languages and Business Career (Almaty, Kazakhstan) as well as a visiting lecturer at Adventist University (Zaoksky, Russia). Her research interests include Islamic Studies, Religious Studies, Contemporary Muslim Ethics, Comparative Theology and History of Religions. She has published a number of articles and chapters in books on various aspects of modern trends in Islam in Europe and Kazakhstan. She published two books in Russian: The Quest for the Straight Path (Barnaul: New Format), Between Linearity and Plurality: the Focus of Islamic Worldview (Zaoksky: ZCHEI). Currently, she is completing her second Ph.D. in Islamic Studies at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Kazakhstan).
The title of Dr. Muzykina presentation is: The Ethical Dimension in West-Orient Relations in Modern Times
Yura Konstantinova, Ph.D., is Associate professor at the Institute of Balkan Studies with Centre of Thracology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. She has graduated from Sofia University and holds M.A. degrees in History and in Greek Philology. Her main research interests focus on history of Modern Greece, the Bulgarian-Greek relations during the 19th and 20th centuries, the Bulgarian community in Ottoman Salonica, social history, elites. Her major publications are the monographs The Balkan policy of Greece in the Late 19th and Early 20th century (2008) and Bulgarians and Greeks in Struggle for the Ottoman Legacy (2014), published in Bulgarian.
The title of Dr/ Konstantinova presentation is: "The Health Care and Hygiene in the Late Ottoman Salonica: from a Bulgarian Perspective"
Yuri Stoyanov, obtained his PhD from the Warburg Institute, University of London and is based at SOAS, University of London. A Senior Fellow at the Albright Institute, Jerusalem, his current assignments include visiting professorships at several universities in Europe and Asia; his past assignments include Oxford , British Academy and Wingate fellowships, and Directorship of the British Academy Kenyon Institute in Jerusalem. He is on the editorial board of several international academic journals and institutions and has published widely on interactions between Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam and status of religious and cultural/archaeological reserve areas, survival of archaic teachings/practices, and current situation of religious sectarian groups and minorities in the Levant, Middle East and Central Asia. His publications include The Hidden Tradition in Europe (Penguin Books, 1994), The Other God (Yale University Press, 2000), Defenders and Enemies of the True Cross (Austrian Academy of Sciences Press, 2011) and edited volumes.
The title of Dr. Stoyanov presentation is: "The Holy Sites and Spaces of the Orient in Europe: Translations and Symbolic Constructions"