Working Groups

Photo by: AGYA

Common Heritage and Common Challenges

Processes of exchange across the Mediterranean, migration and refugee issues throughout history, shared cultural heritage, preservation of endangered historical sites, food as a cultural signifier - all these topics relate to questions of common heritage and common challenges in the Arab world and Germany. In different projects the Working Group aims at achieving a deeper understanding and a more profound awareness of processes of exchange in order to combine different research approaches.

Members in Charge

Nuha Al-Shaar

Arabic & Islamic Studies
American University of Sharjah, Department of Arabic & Translation Studies

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Konstantin Klein

University of Bamberg, Lehrstuhl für Alte Geschichte

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Barbara Winckler

Arabic & Islamic Studies
University of Münster Department of Arabic & Islamic Studies

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All Working Group Members

Ammar Abdulrahman

Institute for Ancient Near Eastern Studies of the Freie Universität Berlin

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Sarhan Dhouib

University of Kassel Department of Philosophy

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Tamirace Fakhoury

Political Science
Lebanese American University, Department of Social Sciences

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Christian Fron

Ancient History
University of Heidelberg, Department of Ancient History and Epigraphy

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Fatima Kastner

Law, Sociology
Institute for World Society Studies Bielefeld University Faculty of Sociology

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Beate Ulrike La Sala

Freie Universität Berlin, Collaborative Research Center 980 "Episteme in Motion"

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Laila Prager

University of Hamburg Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology

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Tobias Redlich

Helmut Schmidt University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg Institute of Production Engineering

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Khalid Ibrahim Talahma

Birzeit University Department of Law

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Tarek Tawfik

Egyptology, Museology
Cairo University Faculty of Archaeology Department of Egyptology

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Pierre Thielbörger

Ruhr University Bochum Institute for Law of Peace and Armed Conflict

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Working Group Projects


Media Transitions and Cultural Debates in Arab Societies: Transhistorical Perspectives on the Impact of Communication Technologies

Digital technologies have affected literature and culture, their authors and audiences. So has the transition from oral to script culture – many centuries ago. The AGYA conference explores the impact of ‘new media’ on modes of cultural expression and debate cultures in Arab societies.

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Dynamics of Cultural Impact: Arab and German Cultural Heritage of Zanzibar

The history of the Apfelstrudel cannot be told without taking a look at the history of cultural exchange and trade between Zanzibar and Germany in the 19th century. A conference explores contemporary and interdisciplinary aspects of Cultural Impact and Cultural Heritage with a focus on the “case study” of Zanzibar.

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Insatiable Appetite: Food as Cultural Signifier

Referring to Early Modern European banquet culture, Mikhail Bakhtin described the act of eating as an "interaction with the world". The conference aims at exploring this kind of interaction while analyzing cultural as well as scientific ramifications of food and foodways in Europe and the Mediterranean.

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Hot Encounters: Glass Blowing and Glass Art in the Middle East and Europe

Glass Blowing is believed to has been originated in the region of Syria in the 1st century BC, and rapidly spread throughout the ancient world. The Working Group has decided to bring attention to the cross-cultural elements of this fragile material.

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Fluid Nature, Fluid Cultures: Malta and the Mediterranean

The island of Malta was not only the thematic focus of this conference, but also the place of event. The organizers Prof Julia Hauser and Prof Jens Scheiner have realized an innovative conference format: investigating Malta as a physical and cultural space by visits to actual sites related to the conference topics.

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