Lifelong Learning Centre

The Idea of the Caliphate

Thursday 20th November 2014
5.30pm - 7.00pm
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As part of the Lifelong Learning Centre’s Seminar Series this free event is open to anyone with an interest in this topic. To register for a place please click here or, alternatively, use the ordering form at the bottom of the page.


Centenary Gallery, Parkinson Building, University of Leeds


Following the recent declaration of the Caliphate (an Islamic state led by a supreme religious and political leader) by ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), attention has once again focused on this subject. This presentation will critique the Caliphate in the context of Islam and modernity, exploring how demands for Muslim autonomy are contested and displaced in the context of the decolonization of the Caliphate.

Finally, the Caliphate and its significance will be examined not in relation to events of the past but rather to the ability of Muslims to construct a way forward in the future.

This seminar will be of particular interest to people who would like to explore the current discourse around this emotive subject in greater depth.


Dr. Salman Sayyid

School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Leeds

From 2010 to 2013 Salman Sayyid was the inaugural Director of the Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding in Australia. His main intellectual interests lie in the areas of critical Muslim studies, de-colonial political and social theory and rhetoric. His numerous publications explore the postcolonial condition and have been translated into a number of languages including Persian, Turkish and Arabic.

His first book A Fundamental Fear was nominated for the British Sociological Association’s prize for best first monograph. He is a joint editor of the monograph series Postcolonial Horizons/De-colonial Studies, published by Pluto Press, and is the founding editor of ReOrient: The Journal of Critical Muslim Studies. His recent publications include a co-edited volume entitled Thinking Through Islamophobia and a co-authored book entitled Racism, Governance and Public Policy. His most recent book, Recalling the Caliphate, was published in 2014.

Refreshments will be available from 5.00pm.