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Translating the Life of Ibn Hanbal

February 28, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Jonathan Brown (Associate Professor of Islamic Civilization, Georgetown) and Matthew Fisher (Associate Professor of English, UCLA) will discuss The Life of Ibn Hanbal by Ibn al-Jawzi (d. 1200), recently translated by Michael Cooperson (Professor of Arabic, NELC, UCLA). This translation, which won the 2017 Sheikh Hamad Prize for Translation and Cultural Understanding, recounts the life of the famous ninth-century teacher of Hadith.


Michael Cooperson received his PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University. His previous books include Al Ma’mun and Classical Arabic Biography, and he has co-authored and edited many others on subjects ranging from Baghdad in rhetoric and narrative to Arabic time travel literature. His current projects include a book on the cultural history of the early Abbasid period, as well as a translation of the Maqāmāt of al-Ḥarīrī for the Library of Arabic Literature.


Jonathan Brown is the Alwaleed bin Talal Chair of Islamic Civilization in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and the Director of the Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim Christian Understanding. The editor in chief of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Law. Dr. Brown’s current research interests include Islamic legal reform and a translation of Sahih al-Bukhari.


Matthew Fisher is an Associate Professor of English at UCLA. The author of Scribal Authorship and the Writing of History in Medieval England, his research focuses on the material and ideological processes of textual composition, transmission, and circulation.



Asma Sayeed recieved her PhD from the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University. She has published on topics related to Muslim women and their religious participation in journals such as Studia Islamica and Islamic Law and Society and has contributed a number of encyclopedia articles on women’s history in early and classical Islam. Her current project relates to Muslim education and in particular to an examination of texts and textual practices in diverse regional and historical contexts.


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February 28, 2018
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm