Second Annual Syeda Mubarik Begum Urdu-Farsi Conference
The Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies program hosted the Second Annual Syeda Mubarik Begum Urdu-Farsi conference on the 3rd and 4th of March 2023. The conference brought togethers scholars from Tehran, Kabul, Boston, Delhi and Tashkent in an intense two-day program to discuss the classical Indo-Persian poet, Amir Khusrau’s legacy for South Asia and the surrounding regions.
The keynote speech by Professor Sunil Sharma of Boston University spoke about the complexities that Khusrau’s immense and diverse corpus poses for the Euro-centric question of world literature. Other talks by renowned Khusrau scholars such as Dr. M. Hussaini Fitrat (Kabul/Vancouver), Ghulam Moeenuddin Nizami (Punjabi University) and Dr. Ahmad Khatami (Shahid Behisti University, Tehran) included his significance for poets of Afghanistan, the ways in which Khusrau was shaped by his spiritual master, Nizamuddin Auliya of Delhi, and by poets such as Saadi Shirazi. From LUMS, Dr. Fatima Fayyaz, also the conference organizer, presented on Khusrau’s transformation of a well-known Persian epic romance into one that takes its contexts from North-India instead.
The final session took place as a roundtable on future directions for Amir Khusrau scholarship with Dr. Sunil Sharma, Dr. Ahmad Khatami, Dr. Sayed M. Hussaini Fitrat, Dr. Shoaib Ahmad (Oriental College, Punjab University) and Dr. Aqsa Sajid (Persian Department, GCU). The conference also included a recital by Mr Naveed Riaz and sitar performance by Mr Rakae Jamil, as well as a qavvali by the Sami Brothers on the closing night.
The event was supported by the Syeda Mubarik Begum Endowment, the Dean’s Office of the Mushtaq Gurmani School of Humanities and Social Sciences, and Oriental College, University of the Punjab.
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