David Simonowitz, assistant professor of Middle Eastern studies, will examine Islamic pilgrimage practices from the late 19th century to the early 20th century at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 21, in the Payson Library Surfboard Room, Malibu.
Of the vast variety of regions that make up the Middle East, Simonowitz has said, "It's such a diverse region, with countless historical, social, and cultural factors, and even geography, that make it far more complex than we tend to imagine. It's hard to describe the people of these countries through sweeping generalizations."
Simonowitz's lecture is part of the "Muslim Journeys Bookshelf," a grant awarded to Pepperdine University Libraries by the National Endowment of the Humanities and the American Library Association. Librarian Sally Bryant directs the project, with Simonowitz as lead scholar. The "Muslim Journeys Bookshelf," a group of books and DVDs that explore the Muslim experience, is available at Payson Library.
Simonowitz received his Ph.D in Islamic Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he has also taught Islamic Art. Simonowitz has published research on Yemen, Turkey, Egypt, Iran, and Iraq, and is fluent in modern standard Arabic, Egyptian Arabic, Spanish, and French, with advanced knowledge of Persian. Now Assistant of Middle East Studies, Simonowitz has worked with Pepperdine as a visiting professor in Middle East Studies since 2009.
Cost of attendance to the event is free. For more information, contact Ken LaZebnik at (310) 506-6785.