IMC 2013: Sessions

Session 221: Pleasures and Interactions in the Medieval Islamic World, I

Monday 1 July 2013, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:School of Abbasid Studies, Universities of St Andrews, Cambridge, and Leuven
Organiser:Hugh Kennedy, Department of the Languages & Cultures of the Near & Middle East, School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London
Moderator/Chair:Hugh Kennedy, Department of the Languages & Cultures of the Near & Middle East, School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London
Paper 221-aMedieval Pragmatics: Knowing the Rules and How to Break Them
(Language: English)
Letizia Osti, Dipartimento di Scienze della Mediazione Linguistica e di Studi Interculturali, Università degli Studi di Milano
Index terms: Islamic and Arabic Studies, Women's Studies
Paper 221-bDifferentiation of Pleasure in Medieval Arabic Erotica
(Language: English)
Pernilla Myrne, Institutionen för språk och litteraturer, Göteborgs Universitet
Index terms: Islamic and Arabic Studies, Sexuality
Paper 221-cThe Abbasid Slave Courtesan: A Cultural Mediator for an Ethical Appreciation of Pleasure
(Language: English)
Karen Moukheiber, Department of History, American University of Beirut
Index terms: Islamic and Arabic Studies, Sexuality
Abstract

This session looks at representations of sexual relations in the first three centuries of the Abbasid caliphate (750-1050). Abbasid court culture produced a a variety of writing dealing with relations between the sexes in a courtly and literate society. Much of the discussion focuses on the role of the slave-girl, often highly educated outspoken but subject all sorts of limits and boundaries. The adab (belles-lettres) literature of the time discusses all the pleasures of a courtly society including food, dress and wine and sexuality was an important and explicit element in this milieu.