I’m excited to announce that the Majlis Book Club of the Museum of Islamic Art library has asked me to lead a discussion of Islamic astrolabes! So if you’re in Qatar and interested, please join me on Wednesday, April 23 at 3pm in the MIA library.
It’s not an academic talk; more an interactive exploration of what astrolabes are and some things they stood for in the “period mind” of the pre-modern Islamic world. I’ll be explaining a bit about how they work and how they were perceived in wider society, and delving into some symbolism going on with/in them.
Since it’s an event for a book club, there is some reading to do beforehand: the first six discourses of Rumi’s Fihi Ma Fihi (PDF here). At the very least, read Discourse 2; it’s only 7 pages, and it builds up into an astrolabe metaphor which we’ll be teasing out.
(EDIT: In case the website is unclear, I am only running the Rumi and Astrolabes discussion in the afternoon session. The morning session is reading My Name Is Red.)