Upcoming Events


Discovering Common Roots: Sicily and the Mediterranean. A History of Pluralistic Traditions

11 - 13 Dec 2017

University of Palermo, Sicily, Italy

While the legacies of past and present cross-cultural encounters in Spain, Malta and other Mediterranean regions have received much scholarly attention, Sicily's importance and its significance as a key Mediterranean crossroads have been neglected far too often. This AGYA conference explores the culture of dialogue and exchange between Europe and the Arab world by looking at the hybrid cultural elements of Sicily. The island has been an integral part of hegemonic European geopolitical formations for centuries. It has always been a meeting hub where civilizations transformed one another and gave life to the cultural developments at the foundation of European modernity. The conference will focus on the Sicilian-Arab exchange of cultures, starting with the Fatimid Emirate of Sicily, replaced by the Normans which contributed to the formation of the social fabric of Sicily. It also takes a look at the German influence represented by Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, who embodied the fusion the Western and the Arab world and who was known for his respectful relations with his Arab neighbours.

The AGYA conference is organized in collaboration with the Università degli Studi di Palermo and the Department of Humanities (Arab and Islamic Studies).

Conference Scientific Committee:

Dr. Nuha Alshaar, Arab-German Young Academy of Research in Science and Humanities
Prof. Antonino Pellitteri, Full Professor of History of Arab Countries and Islamic Studies
Dr. Ammar Abdulrahman, Arab-German Young Academy of Research in Science and Humanities
Dr. Norman Domeier, Arab-German Young Academy of Research in Science and Humanities
Prof. Dr. Oliver Korn, Arab-German Young Academy of Research in Science and Humanities


The following themes will be discussed:

The Problem of Rethinking the History of Islamic Fatimid Sicily in the Mediterranean (Prof. Antonino Pellitteri)

Les traditions socio-culturelles communes entre la Sicile et l’Ifrîqiya au Moyen Âge (Prof. Mohammed Hassen)

Fabrics in the Fabric of Society: Fatimid and Norman threads in the Hands of Women. (Dr. Delia Cortese)

The Artistic Culture of Sicily in the Medieval Period: Art and Artefacts (Prof. Dr. William Tronzo)

Trinacria: Three Worlds in One Island (Muslims, Jews, and Christians) (Prof.  Giovanna Summerfield)

Islamic Philosophy and Europe in the 13th Century: From Frederick II to Dante Through Averroes (Prof. Massimo Campanini)

Frederick II – A friend of the Muslims? Medieval Sources and Modern Interpretations (Prof. Dr. Klaus van Eickels)

The Qur'anic text and Sicilian Nature in Arabic Travelers' Accounts: Semantic and Intertextual Relations (Dr. Nesma Mohamed Taher Mostafa Elsakaan)

The Philosophical Relations Between Sicily and Arab Culture: Ibn al-Makki al-Siqilli’s Lisan al-Tathqif (Dr. Patrizia Spallino)

Arabic Poetry at the Norman Court: The Case of Ibn Hamdis (Nuha Alshaar) 

Traces of Trade Relations Between Norman Sicily and the Islamic World Based on Monetary Discoveries  (Prof. Alaa-al-Din Alchomari)

Sicily, Multi-Culturalism: Modern Contribution to the Dialogue (Prof. Francesca Maria Corrao)

Sicily and European Modernity (Prof. Norma Bouchard)

On the Current Situation of Sicily (Marco Priore)

Archaeological Traces of Arab Culture in Sicily (Prof. Ammar Abdulrahman)

Date, Time & Venue

11 December 2017, 9 am, Palazzo Chiaramonte, "Lo Steri", Sala delle Capriate, Palermo
12 December 2017, 9.30 am, University of Palermo, Aula Magna, Viale delle Scienze, edificio 12, Palermo



Contact & Registration

Dr. Nuha Alshaar: nalshaar[at]aus.edu



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