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Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme

 
Safet HadziMuhamedovic - shared sacred landscapes

https://www.sharedsacred.com

The Shared Sacred project focuses on the spatial and temporal modes of proximity between persons and communities of ‘different’ faith. It features visual and ethnographic investigations of the tangible and intangible effects of such proximity, embodied in shared landscapes, whether past, present or imagined as the future. Thinking of ‘sharing’ and ‘proximity’ already includes the proposition of some kind of distinction (between persons, genders, religions, ethnicities, etc.), which is usually the result of deep epistemic differentiations. In other words, we might not notice some sacred landscapes as ‘shared’ unless we have already mastered the vocabulary for their ‘different’ constitutive elements. Such languages of distinction may be a methodological fallacy with far-reaching consequences for the communities we write about. 

Rather than emphasising political difference, this project seeks to understand what happens to sacred environments when varying forms of knowledge and practice encounter each other. Such contact may be brief, intermittent and fractured, or steady, durable and even deeply ontological. It may be fraught with conflict, but also temper into forms of resilience to social antagonism. In climates of a heightened politics of distinction, religiously plural and shared landscapes may appear as anchors of change, promising a way out of the quicksand of exclusionary, discriminative regimes. 

Projects to disconnect communities of faith have had long histories and continue to be painfully visible across the world. We are particularly aware of the recent surges of nationalism and exclusionary politics, including wars, ethno-religious engineering, construction of separation barriers and outbursts of physical and verbal violence made ‘in defence’ of religious ‘purity’. In response, this project points to the abundance of enduring shared religious landscapes, testifying to rich and creative coexistences and mixtures. 

The ‘Shared Sacred Landscapes’ project is supported by the University of Cambridge, through the Public Engagement Starter Fund. It will be inaugurated in 2021 through four main activities: a) an experimental panel on inter-faith photography for wide audiences; b) an exhibition of anthropological photography; c) an academic symposium, and d) a drawing competition for Cambridgeshire's schoolchildren. 

For more information about the project, visit https://www.sharedsacred.com

Principal Investigator

Dr Safet HadžiMuhamedović

Publications

All project events will be made available online. Dr HadžiMuhamedović's related publications are available here. The proceedings of 'The Khidr Dialogues' symposium are planned as an edited volume

Latest news

New Publication: Theologies of Reading (Special Issue of CounterText)

28 April 2021

Theologies of Reading: Positions and Responses , the new issue of CounterText , edited by Laura McCormick Kilbride, Simone Kotva and Ruth Jackson Ravenscroft, has been published.

Evans-Pritchard Lectures 2021 to be given by Dr Marlene Schäfers

28 April 2021

Dr Marlene Schäfers will be giving the prestigious Evans-Pritchard Lectures at the University of Oxford this year. The lecture series is titled ‘Voices that Matter: Kurdish Women and the Dilemmas of Representation in Contemporary Turkey’ and will take place at 5.00 pm, via the Teams platform, on 13 May, 20 May and 27 May and 3 June 2021.

International Symposium 'The Khidr Dialogues: Leaps of Faith, Religious Encounters and Shared Sacred Landscapes' & Photo Exhibition on Sacred Landscapes

21 April 2021

CIP is delighted to invite you to the international symposium 'The Khiḍr Dialogues: Leaps of Faith, Religious Encounters & Shared Sacred Landscapes ' on 6 May 2021...