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Products for grant FS-50229-09

Re-Mapping Representations of Exchange between Early Modern Islam and Europe
Karen Nelson, University of Maryland, College Park

Grant details:

Serai: Premodern Encounters (Database/Archive/Digital Edition)
Title: Serai: Premodern Encounters
Author: E. Natalie Rothman
Author: Karen Nelson
Author: Julia Schleck
Author: Geoff Piersol
Abstract: Serai is a collaborative project, bringing together a development team at the University of Toronto with collaborators at the universities of Nebraska Lincoln, Maryland, and elsewhere. It originated in two distinct initiatives: ePorte, a collaboratory for Premodern Mediterranean Studies, began at the University of Toronto in 2009. It involved from its inception several doctoral students in the Department of History (specialists in cross-confessional interactions in medieval and early modern Iberia, the Italian Peninsula, and the Ottoman Empire), information technologists, digital librarians, and work-study undergraduate students in History and Computer Science, and was coordinated by Prof. Natalie Rothman. Serai/Early Modern Exchange, a site dedicated to early modern European encounters with Islamicate societies, emerged out of a NEH seminar at the University of Maryland in 2010. The original NEH seminar, “Remapping the Renaissance: Exchange between Early Modern Islam and Europe,” was conceived by Judith Tucker (History, Georgetown University), Adele Seeff (Renaissance Studies, University of Maryland), and Karen Nelson (English, University of Maryland). Participants included scholars from History, Religious Studies, Art History, and Languages and Literatures. One of these, Julia Schleck, forged connections with Jyotsna Singh and developed an affiliated program, Serai.
Year: 2011
Primary URL:
Primary URL Description: Serai is a free and open online collaboratory for scholarship on premodern encounters across ethnolinguistic and religious divides. Our site is a digital meeting place where scholars can share resources, exchange ideas, and collaborate on projects. It is in an explicitly trans-disciplinary space for researchers, teachers, and students at all stages of their careers. We combine regional expertise with a keen interest in the transformative potential of digital scholarship. We hope to inspire others to join us in thinking through our diverse research materials about the multiple intersections between the past and the future of cultural encounters, knowledge production, and boundary crossing, and the urgency of exploring connectivities and confluences across seemingly disparate spaces.
Secondary URL:
Secondary URL Description: Serai now serves as the portal for materials developed in the course of the NEH 2010 seminar [although as of Dec. 2015, with the site about to move to a new server, much of the data is stored off-site until the transition is complete]. Videos for all of the sessions are housed on Vimeo to offer a separate, public, open gateway.
Access Model: Open access, Drupal-based platform