In 2016, the Indonesian Islamic mass organization Nahdatul Ulama
launched an international advocacy campaign for promoting Islam Nusantara
, or Southeast Asian Islam, as a tolerant variant of the world’s second largest religion with global significance and relevance. The initiative is also a demonstration of growing assertiveness on the part of Indonesian Muslim leaders and intellectuals.
In this lecture the notion of Islam Nusantara
is used to tie together my two main research interests: The Islamization of Southeast Asia and the intellectual history of the modern Muslim world, which have been the subject of four monographs. After a diachronic reflection on the arrival, adoption and adaptation of Islam in Southeast Asia, the focus will be narrowed to Indonesia; relating key features of Islam Nusantara
to intellectual debates among Indonesian Muslims about the place of religion in the world’s most populous Islamic nation state since the regime change (1998/9) on the eve of the new millennium.
Dr. Carool Kersten
is Reader (Associate Professor) in the Study of Islam & the Muslim World at King’s College London. Aside from a PhD in the Study of Religions from SOAS, he has also trained as an Arabist and Southeast Asianist. Dr. Kersten’s research interests include Islam in Southeast Asia and the intellectual history of the modern Muslim world. He is the author and editor of eleven books, including A History of Islam in Indonesia
(Edinburgh University Press, 2017) and Islam in Indonesia: The Contest for Society, Ideas and Values
(Oxford University Press, 2015), both of which have been translated into Indonesian, as well as the wider oriented intellectual histories Contemporary Thought in the Muslim World
: Trends, themes, and Issues
(Routledge, 2019) and Cosmopolitans and Heretics: New Muslim Intellectuals and the Study of Islam
(Oxford University Press, 2011).
Moderated by Waleed Ziad
(UNC Religious Studies).
Co-sponsored by UNC’s Center for Middle East and Islamic Studies
Register by clicking here.