Book Launch: Angie Heo, Febe Armanios, and Bogac Ergene

Friday, January 4, 2019 - 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Event Presenter/Author: 
Angie Heo, Febe Armanios, and Bogac Ergene

"Stunning. Based on years of fieldwork, this book takes us on a deep dive into the cultural practices and visual media that have shaped the identity of the Coptic Orthodox Church. By studying 'the political lives of saints' through the prism of relics, apparitions, and icons, Heo decodes Christian-Muslim sectarianism and the making of the modern Egyptian nation-state." — Stephen J. Davis, author of Coptic Christology in Practice 

"A timely, comprehensive, and thoroughly researched information on all things halal...The book is scholarly in its depth and sources but easy to understand in its straightforward writing style. Though billed as a history, it is also an invaluable guide for anyone who wants to follow-or know more about-increasingly complex halal traditions, which changed as Islam spread and encountered new cuisines...Armanios and Ergene's Halal Food: A History is a major addition to food studies, historic as well as contemporary." — Foreword Reviews

Angie Heo, Febe Armanios, and Bogac Ergene read from and discuss The Political Lives of Saints: Christian-Muslim Meditation in Egypt (University of California Press, 2018) and Halal Food: A History (Oxford University Press, 2018)

At the Co-op

RSVP HERE (Please note that your RSVP is requested, not required.)

About The Political Lives of Saints: Since the Arab Spring in 2011 and ISIS’s rise in 2014, Egypt’s Copts have attracted attention worldwide as the collateral damage of revolution and as victims of sectarian strife. Countering the din of persecution rhetoric and Islamophobia, The Political Lives of Saints journeys into the quieter corners of divine intercession to consider what martyrs, miracles, and mysteries have to do with the routine challenges faced by Christians and Muslims living together under the modern nation-state.

Drawing on years of extensive fieldwork, Angie Heo argues for understanding popular saints as material media that organize social relations between Christians and Muslims in Egypt toward varying political ends. With an ethnographer’s eye for traces of antiquity, she deciphers how long-cherished imaginaries of holiness broker bonds of revolutionary sacrifice, reconfigure national sites of sacred territory, and pose sectarian threats to security and order. A study of tradition and nationhood at their limits, The Political Lives of Saints shows that Coptic Orthodoxy is a core domain of minoritarian regulation and authoritarian rule, powerfully reversing the recurrent thesis of its impending extinction in the Arab Muslim world.

About Angie Heo: Angie Heo is Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Sociology of Religion at University of Chicago Divinity School. The Political Lives of Saints is her first book.

About Halal Food: Food trucks announcing "halal" proliferate in many urban areas but how many non-Muslims know what this means, other than cheap lunch? Here Middle Eastern historians Febe Armanios and Bogac Ergene provide an accessible introduction to halal (permissible) food in the Islamic tradition, exploring what halal food means to Muslims and how its legal and cultural interpretations have changed in different geographies up to the present day. Covering practices from the Middle East and North Africa to South Asia, Europe, and North America, this timely book is for anyone curious about the history of halal food and its place in the modern world.

About Febe Armanios: Febe Armanios is Associate Professor of History at Middlebury College. She is the author of Coptic Christianity in Ottoman Egypt and her most recent project examines the rise of American-funded and local Christian television in the Middle East.

About Bogac Ergene: Bogac Ergene is Professor of History at the University of Vermont. He’s an expert on Islamic legal practice in the Ottoman Empire and is the author of Local Court, Provincial Society and Justice in the Ottoman Empire as well as co-author of The Economics of Ottoman Justice: Settlement and Trial in the Sharia Courts.

Event Location: 
The Seminary Co-Op Bookstore
5751 S. Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637