Visiting Shrines, Holding Manuscripts: On the Footsteps of Islamization in the Philippines
Location: Online, via Zoom
Sponsor: Harvard University Asia Center
Philippines Lecture Series
Speaker: Elsa Clavé, Assistant Professor of Austronesian Studies, Asian-Africa Institute, University of Hamburg; Non-resident Fellow, Harvard University Asia Center
Chair: James Robson, James C. Kralik, and Yunli Lou Professor, Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations; Harvard College Professor; Victor and William Fung Director, Asia Center, Harvard University
Presented via Zoom webinar. Register here.
Abstract: Visiting the tomb of a saint, composing and transmitting a genealogy, or copying a manuscript are practices that organize time, society, and territory, in the Muslim Southern Philippines. Based on the local written and oral sources related to the Islamization of the region, this talk presents the emergence of three Islamized political entities - the sultanates of Sulu, Magindanao-Buayan, and the Muslim confederation Pat a pengampong ko Ranao. It focuses on the social and cultural aspects of Islamization and highlights the circulation of a ‘Malay‘ cosmopolitan culture in the Southern Philippines, as well as the local specificities of an indigenized Islam.
Biography: Elsa Clavé is an assistant professor of Austronesian studies at the Asian-Africa Institute, University of Hamburg, where she specializes in the social and cultural history of Muslim societies in insular Southeast Asia, and co-organizes the study program The Philippines in Austronesian Studies. She and has recently published her first monograph Les sultanats du Sud philippin - Une histoire sociale et culturelle de l’islamisation (XVe-XXe siècles) (Paris, EFEO, 2022) and is currently writing her second monograph on Indonesian mnemonic communities and the 1965-66 mass massacres. She is also the principal investigator of a project on land rights, use, and ownership in 19th c. Malay peninsula at the Center for the Studies of Manuscript cultures (CSMC).