Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Forum for Scholars and Publics (Old Chem 011)
12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Light lunch served.
An informal conversation in the aftermath of the November attacks, in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo assault last year.
The global media has characterized 2015 as a “year of terror” in France. Beginning with the terror attacks launched in Paris in January 2015 against the satirical review Charlie Hebdo as well as a kosher establishment, and a black policewoman, the end of the year saw even more deadly attacks in Paris against a rock concert, sports arena, and restaurants in November 2015. Less well covered by the global media have been a series of relentless attacks in Middle Eastern and African countries that have claimed a far higher number of victims. Among the countries worst affected by terrorism in 2015 were Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Lebanon, Nigeria, and Mali.
The panelists will speak to the case of three cities: Paris, Beirut, and Bamako. How are they dealing with the insecurity and anguish of global terror attacks? How are the neighborhoods hardest hit living with radicalism? How do the latest generations in cosmopolitan communities shaped by nationalism and post-colonial realities respond to catastrophic violence?
Following the shocks of last year, will the global debate over freedom of expression, ‘states of exception’, and tolerance lead to societies that embrace global connections or shun them?
The informal conversation, moderated by Professors Helen Solterer and Omid Safi, will begin with remarks from:
- Anne-Gaëlle Saliot, Assistant Professor of Twentieth Century French Literature & Film, Duke, Director of the EDUCO program in Paris.
- Zeina Halabi, Assistant Professor of Modern Arabic Literature & Culture at UNC-Chapel Hill, and an expert on Beirut.
- Amadou Fofana, Visiting Professor, Humanities Writ Large Initiative, Specialist in African Cinema, just returned from Senegal.
UNC Chapel Hill
Zeina G. Halabi is Assistant Professor of Modern Arabic Literature and Culture at UNC-Chapel Hill. Halabi’s teaching and research interests revolve around questions of loss, mourning, and dissidence in Arabic literatures. She is currently working on a project pertaining to experimental literature and cinema in contemporary Beirut.
Williamette University & Duke University
Dr. Amadou T. Fofana is Associate Professor of French at Willamette University and a Humanities Writ-Large 2015-2016 Visiting Faculty Fellow at Duke University. He received a Licence es Lettres and a Maîtrise in English from Cheikh Anta Diop University, Dakar, Senegal. He also received an MA in French Literature and Civilization from Michigan State University, and his Ph.D. in African Languages and Literature from UW-Madison, WI. His research and teaching interests include French language and literature, Francophone literatures and cultures, African languages, literature and films.
Anne-Gaëlle Saliot is is an Assistant Professor in French Studies at Duke University, and President of the Educo program in Paris for 15-16. Her research occupies the boundary between aesthetics and literature. She is the author of the book The Drowned Muse: Casting the Unknown Woman of the Seine Across the Tides of Modernity which was published in September 2015 at Oxford University Press. She has strong interest in philosophical approaches to images, particularly in Benjamin, Blanchot, Deleuze and Rancière. She has published on Maurice Blanchot for Les Cahiers de l'Herne. Her newest research deals with French cinema and theories of cinema. In her current book project she explores the ways in which nineteenth-century literature and aesthetics surface in New Wave cinema. She has publications on Truffaut, Godard and Rivette.
Duke University Islamic Studies
Omid Safi is a specialist in classical Islam and contemporary Islamic thought, Safi’s research on American Muslims; Prophet Muhammad and the Qur’an; debates in contemporary Islam; and Sufism and Persian literature has been published in academic publications. His forthcoming books include “Makers of Modern Iran” and “Rumi: Sufi Saint, American Icon.” Safi has also been a frequent speaker on Islam in popular media, including in The New York Times, Al Jazeera, The Washington Post, BBC, NPR, NBC and international media. He also is active on social media and as a blogger, is a lead Islam writer for the Huffington Post, and his column “What Would Muhammad Do?” has been a regular Religion News Service feature.
Duke University Center for French and Francophone Studies
Helen Solterer's research focuses on pre-modern literature and culture, and its interplay with twentieth-century and contemporary thought. Her last book, Medieval Roles for Modern Times, investigates the politics and aesthetics of reviving the earliest drama during two World Wars. She is currently working on two books: “Timely Fictions” on the multiple times and places of pre-modern theater, poetry, pictorial narrative; and “Love to Hate: A Premodern Legacy?” on hate speech and fiction. As Director of the French and Francophone Studies, she coordinates the initiative, “Francophone Digital Humanities”, that received a major grant from the Embassy of France. Over the past fifteen years, she has regularly taught a course on the Franco-American History of Freedom of Speech.