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New event series: "Islamization Debated"

From October 05, 2021 until April 05, 20227:00 p.m.
CORDOBA
Casa Árabe Auditorium (at Calle Samuel de los Santos Gener, 9). 7:00 p.m. Check each conference's entry conditions.
In Spanish.

Casa Árabe is hosting a series of conferences intended to spur debate and a re-examination of the complex process which the Spanish Visigothic population underwent in Al-Andalus. The event series will be held from October 2021 through April 2022.

The archeological research on the process of the Spanish Visigothic population’s transformation and integration into the Islamic social structure has seen significant advancements over the last few decades. This interesting phenomenon is known as “Islamization.” It consisted of a complex process, because it required profound change in the social, political, economic and ideological foundations of a very heterogeneous population across a widespread territory that had evolved with substantial differences during the latest decades of Visigothic rule.

There is no consensus among the scientific community on  the ways in which these transformations took place or at what pace. Quite the contrary: there are many points of view and approaches to this phenomenon, as we can see in a wide range of subjects and fields. Though this topic is unquestionably interesting, no review or re-examination of the concept of “Islamization” has yet been performed, nor has an assessment of the existing archeological information on the early Islamic presence in Al-Andalus.

As a result, we have proposed this event series aimed at contributing to knowledge on this subject matter and the historical and archeological interpretation of Al-Andalus, which will also spur scientific discussion among leading domestic and foreign specialists on this topic. During each session, two specialists will present their differing approaches to and interpretations of a specific topic, thus contributing their knowledge about Islamization so as to further current studies on the history and archeology of Al-Andalus. There will then be a debate, followed by questions from the audience. This will encourage participation and interaction by those attending, a group whose audience we hope will include professionals and students of the discipline, in addition to our regular audiences. This approach fits in perfectly with Casa Árabe’s calling to act as a forum that promotes the showing and sharing of knowledge and experience involving the Islamic world of Al-Andalus.

The event series is being coordinated by Professors María ElenaSalinas (University of Almería), Carmen González (Universityof Cordoba) and María Teresa Casal (University of Cordoba).

María Elena Salinas Pleguezuelo
An archeologist and researcher, Professor Salinas specializes in the archeology of Al-Andalus, and in recent years her research has focused on studying the technology of glazed ceramics in the medieval Mediterranean world. She earned her PhD in Archeology at the University of Cordoba and worked on the GMU-UCO Agreement. She has completed stays abroad, including most notably one at the Research Laboratory for Archeology and the History of Art at Oxford University, where she was trained in Archeometry, and a post-doctoral fellowship in the Marie Curie European program given by the Department of Physics at the Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña. She is currently an assistant professor of Medieval History at the University of Almería.

Carmen González Gutiérrez
Ms. González Gutiérrez earned a PhD for her doctoral thesis on “The Mosques of Islamic Cordoba: Concept, types and urban function,” which she defended in 2016. Since then, she has continued to explore and expand this line of research by approaching the mosques of of Al-Andalus from various perspectives, including comparative analyses between East and West, gender perspectives, etc. Her work is taking shape in many scientific publications covering these topics, something also made possible by several research stays and contracts at international institutions, such as the Université Lumière Lyon II (France), the Technical University of Berlin (Germany), the University of Bamberg (Germany), The Cyprus Institute (Cyprus) and the University of Erfurt (Germany). She is currently carrying out her research activity at the University of Cordoba’s Archeology Department, and also within the framework of the research project “Religion and Urbanity” of the Max-Weber-Kolleg at the University of Erfurt (Germany).

María Teresa Casal García has a PhD in Heritage and Archeology from the University of Cordoba. She is accredited by the ANECA as an associate professor and is a specialist in the Archeology and Medieval History of Al-Andalus. She has a great deal of experience in research, teaching and managing archeological excavations, all backed by her years of work on the agreement between the Municipal Urban Planning Management Department and the University of Cordoba. She later continued her work at the Spanish National Research Council’s Institute of History-CCHS (CSIC, Madrid). She has completed several research stays abroad and has authored over thirty specialized publications with a great impact in the field. She has been part of and currently belongs to several domestic and foreign research groups and projects. She has been invited to speak at different Spanish and foreign universities and institutions, thus presenting her research during congresses, seminars and Master’s degree programs on medieval history and archeology, including:  Oxford and Leeds (UK); Hamburg (Germany); Lyon and Paris Sorbonne (France) and Shanghai (China).


All of the conferences, if they can be held in person, will take place at Casa Árabe’s headquarters in Cordoba at 7:00 p.m. You can also watch the presentations on our YouTube channel as of one week after each event. Given the current health situation, the upcoming conferences and dates are subject to change.
New event series: "Islamization Debated"
  • Islamization in Studies on Al-Andalus

    Islamization in Studies on Al-Andalus

    October 05, 20217:00 p.m.
    CORDOBA
    Casa Árabe Auditorium (at Calle Samuel de los Santos Gener, 9). 7:00 p.m. Free entry until the event’s capacity is reached. The decision on whether to hold these activities in person will depend upon the health situation at the time, and mask use will be required.
    In Spanish.
    This is the first debate in the event series organized by Casa Árabe on the Islamization of the Spanish Visigothic population during the early years of the Islamic presence on the Iberian Peninsula. It will be held on October 5 at our headquarters in Cordoba. 
    This session will pay tribute to a whole generation of researchers, amongst whom we would highlight Manuel Acién and Pierre Guichard, two of the early pioneers in the study of Al-Andalus. Their contributions to the historical study of Al-Andalus were essential and led to wide-ranging, groundbreaking research that has gone above and beyond the established paradigms. 

    At this session, we will get the chance to hear from two experts leading some of the main research projects on the transformations that Spanish Visigothic society underwent when the Muslims arrived. This makes it indispensable to ascertain how the concept of “Islamization” came about and what we understand by it now, analyzing how research on Andalusian society has evolved in recent years.

    Participants: Vicente Salvatierra Cuenca and Sonia Gutiérrez Lloret. Moderated by: Alberto León Muñoz.

    Vicente Salvatierra Cuenca has been a professor of Medieval History at the University of Jaén since 2009. He created a research group there on medieval archeology, which focused on the archeology of Al-Andalus. He excavated inside both urban buildings (El Maristán de Granada, the Arab baths of El Naranjo) and rural settlements (Cerro Miguelico, Cerro de Peñaflor). After a shift in the archeological policy of the Autonomous Regional Government of Andalusia in 1992, and the development of the archeology of architecture, he focused on cooperating with municipal governments to recover important buildings, from Moorish fortresses transformed by the Castilians (Segura de la Sierra, Beas de Segura) and castles turned into palaces (Villardompardo), to palaces such as that of Villalvo Nicuesa (Jaén) and the Casa Grande (Los Villares). In 1994, he founded the journal “Arqueología y Territorio Medieval,” which he co-directs with Irene Montilla Torres, a publication now indexed in SCOPUS, FECYT and other platforms.

    Sonia Gutiérrez Lloret has been a professor of Archeology at the University of Alicante since 2003, within the Department of Prehistory, Archeology, Ancient History, Greek Philology and Latin Philology. She is also the director of the University Institute for Research on Archeology and Historical Heritage-INAPH and headed the Scientific Council of the La Alcudia University Foundation for Archeological Research at the University of Alicante from 2014 to 2019. The director of the Archeology and Heritage Research Group (UA), she also coordinated the official Master’s degree program in Professional Archeology and Integral Heritage Management from 2007 to 2011, one of the first in Spain, in addition to holding other positions in research evaluation and management at the most important national evaluation agencies (CNEAI, ANEP, ANECA). She is an expert in medieval and post-medieval archeology with a special interest in the transition from late antiquity to the early Middle Ages and, in particular, the study of Al-Andalus and the debate over memory and public uses of history and material heritage. She has directed several research and knowledge transfer projects, including those of the Tolmo de Minateda Archeology Park (Albacete), the Domus-La Alcudia and El Castellar project (Elx) and El Moncayo (Guardamar).

    Alberto León Muñoz
    A tenured professor of Archeology with the University of Cordoba’s Department of Art History, Archeology and Music since 2011, he has focused his research on late-ancient and medieval archeology, the archeology of architecture, Islamic archeology, Al-Andalus urbanism, medieval fortifications and urban archeology. From 2001 to 2008, he formed part of a research team created within the framework of the Cooperation Agreement between the Municipal Urban Planning Management Department and the University of Cordoba, directing several archeological digs, including the intervention in the Women’s Courtyard at the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos, the walled enclosure of the Calahorra, and the borough of Sequnda. A member of the “Sísifo” Research Group (HUM-236) under Andalusia’s Research Plan, he has participated as a researcher in numerous projects funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Technology, and the Spanish National Research, Development and Innovation Plan, including the following highlighted projects: the “Evolution of the historic city of Cordoba, the funerary world, medieval architecture and urbanism” and “Development and Innovation oriented towards the Challenges of Society for the digitalization of the documentary legacy of Catalan architect Felix Hernandez Jimenez.” He is currently co-directing the project “From Iulius Caesar to the Catholic Monarchs: An archeological analysis of 1500 years of history at Cordoba’s Mosque-Cathedral and its surrounding urban environment,” within the framework of the State Programs for Producing Knowledge and Scientific and Technological Strengthening of the Research, Development and Innovation System (Year 2020 call for entries), and he is directing the Focused Archeological Activity in the Cordoba Mosque-Cathedral’s Patio de los Naranjos (since September 2020). He has carried out research stays at the universities of La Sorbonne (Paris IV), Lyon II, Padua, Siena and Cologne, and he is a member of the scientific boards at several specialized journals: "Spal""Post Classical Archaeologies"; "Revista Onoba"; "Cuadernos de Arquitectura y Fortificación" (since 2014); "Revista Castillos de España" (since 2018) and the "Journal of Material Cultures in the Muslim World" (since 2019); as well as others.
  • City formation in al-Andalus and its impact on the region 

    City formation in al-Andalus and its impact on the region 

    October 19, 20217:00 p.m.
    CORDOBA.
    Casa Árabe Auditorium (at Calle Samuel de los Santos Gener, 9). 7:00 p.m. Free entry until the event’s capacity is reached. The decision on whether to hold these activities in person will depend upon the health situation at the time, and mask use will be required.
    In Spanish.
    Second session in this series devoted to scientific discussion of the phenomenon known as the "Islamization" of the Visigoth population in al-Andalus. On October 19 at the Casa Árabe headquarters in Cordoba. 
    Speakers: Juan Francisco Murillo Redondo and Julio Navarro Palazón. Moderated by: Alberto León Muñoz.

    Juan F. Murillo Redondo
    Director of the Archaeology Office of the Cordoba City Council’s Urban Planning Department since 1993. Working in conjunction with the University of Cordoba (UCO) Archeology Department since 1988, he has been an educator in various PhD and graduate programs, and a researcher on many different projects funded by public institutions. He has contributed to introducing the stratigraphic excavation system in Cordoba and the implementation of the recording system known asal-Mulk. A member of the “Sísifo” research group at the UCO, he has developed several research projects on the transition between the late ancient and early medieval city, and on analysis of the strategies for exploiting Cordoba’s periurban environment. He has also authored over a dozen monographic works and articles in specialized journals from Spain and abroad.

    Julio Navarro Palazón
    Holder of a PhD in Islamic Archaeology and head of the research group “Laboratory of Archeology and Architecture of the City” (LAAC), which forms part the School of Arab Studies of Granada (CSIC). He is one of the leading specialists in Islamic architecture and urbanism, a subject on which he has directed several research projects, conferences and monographs. His archeological work has been performed from Jordan to Morocco. His current work studying the great Islamic recreational estates began in Murcia with the excavation of Dar as-Sugra (Monastery of Santa Clara) and Castillejo de Monteagudo. In 2012-14, he began prospecting the Agdal in Marrakesh and the other estates surrounding that city; in 2018, he resumed excavations at the “almunia” of Castillejo de Monteagudo and at Palermo’s Quba Soprana in September 2020.

    Alberto León Muñoz
    A professor of Archeology with the University of Cordoba’s the Department of History of Art, Archaeology and Music since 2011, he has focused his research on late antique and medieval archeology, the archeology of architecture, Islamic archeology, Andalusian urbanism, medieval fortifications and urban archeology. From 2001 to 2008, he formed part of a research team created within the framework of the Cooperation Agreement between the city’s Urban Planning Management Department and the University of Cordoba, heading several archeological digs, including the Patio de Mujeres at the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos, the walled enclosure of La Calahorra and the borough of Sequnda. A member of the“Sísifo” research group at the UCO, he has participated as a researcher in many projects funded by Spain’s Ministry of Science and Technology, and the Spanish National Research, Development and Innovation Plan, including the following highlighted projects: the “Evolution of the historic city of Cordoba, the funerary world, medieval architecture and urbanism” and “Development and Innovation oriented towards the Challenges of Society for digitalization of the documentary legacy of Catalan architect Felix Hernández Jiménez.” He is currently co-directing the project “From Iulius Caesar to the Catholic Monarchs: An archeological analysis of 1500 years of history at Cordoba’s Mosque-Cathedral and its surrounding urban environment,” within the framework of the State Programs for Producing Knowledge and Scientific and Technological Strengthening of the Research, Development and Innovation System (Year 2020 call for entries), and he is directing the Focused Archeological Activity in the Cordoba Mosque-Cathedral’s Patio de los Naranjos (since September 2020). He has carried out research stays at the universities of La Sorbonne (Paris IV), Lyon II, Padua, Siena and Cologne, and he is a member of the scientific boards at several specialized journals: Spal; Post Classical Archaeologies; Revista Onoba, Cuadernos de Arquitectura and Fortificación, Revista Castillos de España, and at the Journal of Material Cultures in the Muslim World, as well as others.

October 5, 2021. “Islamization in studies on Al-Andalus”
Participants: Vicente Salvatierra Cuenca and Sonia Gutiérrez Lloret.
Moderated by: Alberto León.

Participants: Juan F. Murillo Redondo and Julio Navarro Palazón.
Moderated by: Alberto León.

November 2, 2021. “The role of fortifications in the process of Islamization: North/South”.
Participants: Jesús Brufal Sucarrat and Pedro Gurriarán Daza. 
Moderated by: Alberto León.

November 16, 2021. “Numismatics.”
Participants: Fátima Martín and Ruth Pliego. 
Moderated by: María Teresa Casal.

November 30, 2021. “Islamization in the funerary realm.”
Participants: Alfonso Vigil and Mercedes Navarro. 
Moderated by: María Teresa Casal.

January 25, 2022. “Al-Andalus, the Mediterranean and other worlds”.
Participants: Eduardo Manzano and Chris Wickham.
Moderated by: Elena Salinas. 

February 15, 2022. “Water resources and hydraulic systems for land use and control.”
Participants: José María Marín Civantos and Ferrán  Esquilache. 
Moderated by: Carmen González. 

March 1, 2022 “Architectural expressions in early Al-Andalus: influences, transfers and perdurance between East and West”
Participants: Alexandra Uscatescu and Carmen González.
Moderated by: María Teresa Casal.

March 15, 2022. “Perdurance of indigenous culture in the Sharq and Gharb Al-Andalus.”
Participants: Victoria Amorós and Susana Gómez.
Moderated by: Elena Salinas.

March 29, 2022. “The market as an essential space in Al-Andalus cities: the souks and fanadiq.”
 Participants: Alicia Hernández Robles and María Teresa Casal.
Moderated by: Elena Salinas.

April 5, 2022. “Beyond the urban world: conquest and Islamization of Al-Andalus territory.”
Participants: Julio Escalona and José Cristóbal.
Moderated by: Carmen González.