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Presented By: Medieval and Early Modern Studies (MEMS)

MEMS Faculty Showcase. Early Islamic World 2: Family Archives and Female Spaces of Intimacy

Kathryn Babayan, U-M History and Middle East Studies

Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library
Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library
Family Archives and Female Spaces of Intimacy in Early Modern Isfahan

In seventeenth-century Isfahan, the authorship of anthologies was a male prerogative. This talk wonders about women who have been excluded from the act of writing their own anthology to consider gendered literacy and female friendship through an anthology collected in the library of the Urdubadi family of bureaucrats and poets. The decisive role of a female family member, the Urdubadi widow, whose pilgrimage to Mecca is recorded in this anthology, divulges her love for a female companion who was forced to leave Isfahan due to rumors circulating about their friendship. How are we to interpret this inclusion? Reading this family history as an archive, we will see how anthologies document social and affective bonds with kin and with friends, acts that make the city legible for us and for themselves.
Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library
Urdubadi Majmua, Tehran University Library

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March 29, 2021 (Monday) 4:00pm
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