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Keynote Speakers


The Organizing Committee of MEDWORLDS Workshop is proud to announce that the keynote speakers for July 2021 will be:

Prof. Brian A. CATLOS, University of Colorado Boulder

Brian Catlos (Montréal, 1966) earned a PhD in Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto, and currently holds appointments as Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder and Research Associate in Humanities at the University of California Santa Cruz. His work centers on Muslim-Christian-Jewish relations and ethno-religious identity in medieval Europe and the Islamic World, and the history of the pre-Modern Mediterranean. A board member of various academic journals, he also co-directs The Mediterranean Seminar, a major initiative and a forum for international and interdisciplinary collaboration in the emerging field of Mediterranean Studies, and directs the CU Mediterranean Studies Group at Boulder. He has published a number of books and articles including the The Victors and the Vanquished: Christians and Muslims of Catalonia and Aragon, 1050–1300 (Cambridge, 2004), Muslims of Medieval Latin Christendom, 1050–ca. 1615 (Cambridge, 2014), and Infidel Kings and Unholy Warriors: Power Faith and Violence in the Age of Crusade and Jihad (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2014), and Kingdoms of Faith: A New History of Islamic Spain (Basic, 2018).

Prof. Andrew C.S. PEACOCK, University of St. Andrews

Andrew Peacock holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge, and is currently Professor of Middle Eastern and Islamic History at the University of St Andrews. His work focuses on the history of the medieval Middle East, processes of Islamisation, and Islamic manuscripts. A particular interest is medieval Anatolia, on which he directed a major research project funded by the European Research Council, 'The Islamisation of Anatolia, c. 1100-1500' (2011-2017). Major publications include Early Seljuq History (Routledge, 2010), The Great Seljuk Empire (Edinburgh University Press, 2010) and Islam, Literature and Society in Mongol Anatolia (Cambridge University Press, 2019). Edited or co-edited volumes include The Seljuks of Anatolia (IB Tauris, 2013), Islam and Christianity in Medieval Anatolia (Ashgate, 2015) and Islamisation: Comparative Perspectives from History (Edinburgh University Press, 2017).

Assoc. Prof. Emrah Safa GÜRKAN, Istanbul 29 Mayis University

A member of Turkish Young Academy of Sciences (Genç Akademi, TÜBA) and a faculty member of Istanbul 29 Mayıs University, Assoc. Prof. Emrah Safa Gürkan is a historian of the early modern Mediterranean, focusing on the Ottoman Empire. His research interests include espionage, piracy, slavery, conversion, naval technology and cross-confessional diplomacy. After studying International Relations and History at Bilkent University,he completed his Ph.D. in 2012 at Georgetown University with a dissertation entitled “Espionage in the 16th century Mediterranean: Secret Diplomacy, Mediterranean go-betweens and the Ottoman-Habsburg Rivalry”. In addition to a number of articles in English, Turkish, Italian, Spanish and German, he wrote two monographs: Tongues for the Sultan: Intelligence, Sabotage and Bribery in the 16th century (Sultanın Casusları: 16. Yüzyılda İstihbarat, Sabotaj ve Rüşvet Ağları, Hungarian translation published in 2020) and Pirates for the Sultan: Holy War, Booty and Slavery in the Ottoman Mediterranean, 1500 – 1700 (Sultanın Korsanları: Osmanlı Akdenizi’nde Gazâ, Yağma ve Esaret, 1500 – 1700).  While the first of these received the Scientific Monograph Award by Turkish Academy of Sciences (TÜBA), Gürkan himself was given two more awards in 2018: The Outstanding Young Scientist Award by Turkish Academy of Sciences and the Promising Scientist Award at 14th Kadir Has Awards. His third book, Everybody Knows It: Right Answers to Wrong Questions in History (Bunu Herkes Bilir: Tarihte Yanlış Sorulara Doğru Cevaplar), published in 2020, quickly became a best-seller, selling more than 85.000 copies in less than a year.