"Women of Islamic Studies is intended to contest the prevalence of all-male and male dominated academic domains, such as editorial boards, conference panels, publications, guest speakers, bibliographies, books reviews, etc. and provide resources to support the recognition, citation, and inclusion of women scholars in the field of Islamic Studies"
The project, "Women of Islamic Studies," spearheaded by a talented collective of powerful figures in the study of Islam is a long overdue counterbalance to the male dominate spaces of the academy. It is currently in its beginning stages and is deserving of further attention by various audience. For those wanting to learn more, please take a look at its current iteration
I finished writing The Patricians of Nishapur, my first book, in 1970. I was 30 years old and had only lived in two places: Rockford, Illinois, then the state’s second largest city with a population around 100,000, where I lived until graduating from high school, and Cambridge, Massachusetts, or more specifically Harvard University. Yet somehow I felt comfortable and confident in conjuring up the lives of the educated elite of an eleventh century Iranian city from the most niggardly of Arabic sources. It didn’t occur to me then to query my hubris.
Two decades later the thought struck me that maybe I had unconsciously populated Nishapur with versions of the educated middle class Protestant families I had come to know growing up in Rockford. I toyed with this idea from time to time over the years, but only recently have I given it serious consideration. Two things have prompted these deeper reflections.