‘Muslim Journeys’ collection shared
All materials can be found in library
Published: Friday, September 20, 2013
Updated: Thursday, September 19, 2013 16:09
The Porter Henderson Library has partnered with the San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts (SAMFA) to present the “Muslim Journeys” collection throughout the month of September.
“This is a great opportunity for students to get a new cultural outlook,” graduate student Sarah Sanchez said. “It is a chance to understand cultural competence through art and literature.”
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Bridging Cultures Initiative selected ASU’s library as one of 953 libraries nationwide to receive the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf, intended to provide the public reliable sources on Islamic cultures and heritages.
The collection consists of 25 books and three films, as well as a one-year subscription to Oxford Islamic Studies online. Three programs will be presented to students and the community: a film screening, a reading of “One Thousand and One Nights” and a showing of Islamic art followed by discussion.
“The library applied for a grant to acquire the collection to get ahold of materials about a culture that I don’t think is fairly understood,” Assistant Director of Research and Instruction Services Mark Allan said.
Muslim Journeys was awarded to ASU in January 2013, but the library chose to wait until the fall semester to formally present the collection, Allan said. The library partnered with other departments in the university as well as the SAMFA to organize three programs. Dr. Chris Ellery, member of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English honor society, and English graduate and undergraduate students will present readings and commentary of “One Thousand and One Nights,” also known as “Arabian Nights,” in the library learning commons Wednesday, Sept. 25, at 7 p.m. The Multicultural Center will be there as well to provide a tasting of Arabic dishes.
“I think a lot of people who know the 1001 Nights, Arabian Nights, have preconceived ideas of about what they are—sort of this Disney idea … so their views of it would be the way our own popular culture has adapted it,” Ellery said. “I think it’s good to kind of get a flavor of the actual text of 1001 Nights to see what it’s really all about and see that there are serious issues underlying these popular stereotypes we have.”
The final presentation will be a showing of the 90-minute video “Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World” in the SAMFA meeting room on Oct. 1 at 5:30 p.m. Museum Director Howard Taylor will lead a discussion afterward.
The bookshelf includes volumes on Islamic history, Muslim literature, and various viewpoints on Islamic religion and Muslim culture both as a whole and as a part of American society. The books can be found in the Second Floor Stacks.
The videos in the Media Center and the subscription to Oxford Islamic Studies Online expire at the end of the academic year and are available through the library catalog.