Call for papers : Islamism and Violence: Debates and Issues



International Interdisciplinary Symposium on
Islamism and Violence: Debates and Issues
(“Islamisme et violence: débats et enjeux”)

25-26 March 2019
at Université de Montréal

Coorganized by:

The organizing committee of the symposium Islamism and Violence: Debates and Issues (“Islamisme et violence: débats et enjeux”) welcomes the submission of abstracts to this international interdisciplinary academic symposium, to be held at the University of Montreal, on 25th and 26th March 2019, in the Carrefour des Arts et des Sciences (Hall C-3061), at the heart of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, in the Lionel-Groulx Pavilion (2150 Jean Brilliant St., Montreal H3T 1N8).

The organizing committee is pleased to invite serious researchers to explore questions related to one or more of the primary topics addressed in our symposium, either in English or in French (see the list of topics in web-link below). The length of this presentation would follow the usual academic format: 20 to 30 minutes.

The aim is to create an interdisciplinary and multi-theoretical space for researchers of any academic level interested in sharing their work on one aspect or another of the links between Islamism and violence. This intellectual exploration seeks to understand better the transmission chain(s) that link(s) (or not) the intellectual producers of Islamist ideologies and those radicalized aggressors who have carried out violent acts in support of such ideologies.


Since the end of the 1970s and the Islamic revolution in Iran, academic studies related to violence in the name of Islam and its connections to Islamism have increased substantially (Silke, 2004; Ranstorp, 2006; Jackson, 2009; Schmid, 2011; Bibeau 2015, Dakhli, 2016). From a critical interdisciplinary perspective, the symposium aims to explore textually and contextually, the following question: does a direct link exist between the founding texts of Islamism (from al-Afghani, through the writings of Hassan al -Banna, and up to Al-Qaradawi, etc.) and the justification of the violence committed in the name of Islam? A variety of questions occur in this respect: what are the textual underpinnings at stake? Who are the producers/supporters of such Islamist discourses? What are the subsequent intellectual and organizational links of affiliation with these texts that have arisen more recently? Finally, over the last several decades, what contexts witnessed this discourse of violence becoming so deep-rooted as to be put in action?

On an epistemological level, the symposium also aims to analyze the theoretical literature that has developed to explain these Islamist ideologies, for half a century, in both Muslim and non-Muslim environments. In this academic literature, two main approaches have emerged. Structuralist approaches identify the structural roots of the violence committed in the name of Islam (Campana & Lapointe, 2012). These approaches focus on the questions of “why” and the “roots-reasons” for such violence, often to the detriment of a circumstantial micro-sociological comprehension that is more focused on individuals and their processes of engagement that highlight the “how” (Sedgwick, 2010 ; Sommier, 2012). To overcome such structuralist approaches (Crenshaw, 1998; Lake, 2002; Kydd & Walter, 2006; Abrahams, 2008), the processual approaches see engagement with violence as a result of a gradual process of socialization, which is multidimensional, non-teleological (Silke, 2003; Horgan, 2005; Pisoiu, 2011).

Selected papers will be published, as early as September 2019, as part of the proceedings of the symposium in the collection “Études Post-Printemps Arabe” with l`Harmattan (Paris).
This colloquium, sponsored in part by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, will be held under the auspices of the following research institutions and networks:
•    Centre d`études et de recherches internationales de l’Université de Montréal (CÉRIUM)
•    Groupe de recherche sur les enjeux épistémologiques et méthodologiques des études sur la violence au nom de l’islam, Plateforme Universitaire de Recherche sur L’Islam en Europe et au Liban (PLURIEL)
•    Institut d’études post-printemps arabe (IEPPA)

For application procedures and requirements, please submit the following:

•    An abstract (Word format) of 450 words (maximum) including the main object of the paper with the main research-related issues. Paper can focus on any aspect of the symposium. Please include a tentative title for your paper and two or three keywords describing its disciplinary focus.
•    A one-paragraph résumé (Word format) that includes your name, programme of study (MA, MPhil, PhD, Post-Doc, professorial level, etc.), as well as departmental and institutional affiliation.
•    The abstract and the résumé should be sent ‎electronically by December 20, 2018, to:
•    Applicants will be notified of a decision by January 15, 2019.

For more details about this symposium (in French), please click on the following link:

For any further information, please write to the following email address:         One of the following three persons from the organizing committee will respond as soon as possible.

- Patrice Brodeur, Ph.D. (Sciences of Religions), Associate Professor at Université de Montréal
- Wael Saleh, Ph.D. (Applied Human Sciences), Postdoctoral Fellow, CÉRIUM, Univ. de Montréal
- Amany Fouad Salib, Ph.D. (Linguistics), Doctoral Student in Islamic Studies, UQAM

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