Keynote Speakers

BRISMES is delighted to present the keynote speakers for our 2021 conference: Professor Pinar Bilgin (Bilkent University), Professor Caroline Rooney (University of Kent), and Dr amina wadud (National Islamic University of Jogjakarta, Indonesia). 

Pinar Bilgin

Pinar Bilgin is Professor of International Relations at Bilkent University, Ankara, and an Associate Member of the Turkish Academy of Sciences. She has held visiting positions at the Woodrow Wilson International Center (Washington, DC), King’s College London, Centre for the Resolution of International Conflicts (CRIC) at the University of Copenhagen, Centre for Contemporary Middle East Studies at the University of Southern Denmark, Amsterdam Centre for European Studies at the University of Amsterdam, and The Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio). She is the author of many journal articles and books in the field of Critical Security Studies, including  Regional Security in the Middle East: A Critical Perspective (2005; 2nd ed. 2019), The International in Security, Security in the International (2016) and is co-editor of Routledge Handbook of International Political Sociology (with Xavier Guillaume, 2017), and Asia in International Relations: Unthinking Imperial Power Relations (with L.H.M. Ling, 2017). She is an Associate Editor of International Studies Quarterly (2019- ) and previously served as Associate Editor of Security Dialogue (2008-2013) and of International Political Sociology (2012-2017), an editorial board member of the journals ID:International Dialogue, Global Discourse, Security Dialogue, Contexto Internacional, International Studies Quarterly, Revista Brasileira de Política Internacional, Foreign Policy Analysis, International Political Sociology and Geopolitics, and an international editorial advisory board member of the journals Millennium: Journal of International Relations,  Perceptions, and Uluslararasi Lliskiler.  She is the co-editor (with Monica Herz) of the Palgrave book series, Critical Security Studies in the Global South.


Caroline Rooney

Caroline Rooney is Professor of African and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Kent. She was born in Zimbabwe and studied at the University of Cape Town before taking up a Beit Fellowship to undertake doctoral research at the University of Oxford. She works and publishes mainly in the areas of postcolonial studies and Arab cultural studies, focusing on the cultural expression of liberation struggles and their aftermaths in sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa and the Middle East. She is the author of African Literature, Animism and Politics (2000), Decolonising Gender: Literature and a Poetics of the Real (2007), and Creative Radicalism in the Middle East: Culture and the Arab Left After the Uprisings (2020). Her co-edited publications include: ‘Egyptian Literary Culture and Egyptian Modernity’, Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 7:4 (2011) and The Ethics of Representation in Literature, Art and Journalism: Transnational Responses to the Siege of Beirut (2013). Her research by practice includes theatre productions and documentary films. From 2009-12 she was a Global Uncertainties Fellow with a programme entitled ‘Radical Distrust: A Cultural Analysis of the Emotional, Psychological and Linguistic Formations of Political and Religious Extremism.’ From 2012-2015, she held a PaCCS Leadership Fellowship with a programme entitled ‘Imagining the Common Ground: Utopian Thinking and the Overcoming of Resentment and Distrust’. She acted as UK PI of ‘Egypt’s Living Heritage’ (Newton, 2016), and is currently the Co-I of ‘The Crime-Terror Nexus from Below: Criminal and Extremist Practices, Networks and Narratives in Deprived Neighbourhoods of Tripoli’ (ESRC).


amina wadud

Dr amina wadud is a world renown scholar and activist with a focus on Islam, justice, gender, and sexuality. After achieving Full Professor, she retired from US academia—except as Visiting Researcher to the Starr King School for the Ministry, California, USA. After 15 years in retirement, she has recently returned as Visiting Professor at the National Islamic University in Jogjakarta, Indonesia. She migrated to Indonesia in 2018 to avoid the chaos of US politics and ethics first-hand. Author of Qur’an and Woman: Rereading the Sacred Text from a Woman’s Perspective (1999), a classic that helped towards the development of epistemology and methodology in Islamic feminism, which is the most dynamic outcome of Islamic reform today. It is 3 decades old and translated over 10 times, most recently into French. Her second manuscript, Inside the Gender Jihad: Women’s Reform in Islam (2006), then moved the discussion further and aligned with the mandate for ethics and activism to be in collaboration. After completing a 3-year research grant investigating 500 years of Islamic classical discourse on sexual diversity and human dignity, funded by the Arcus Foundation, she is organizing an International Center for Queer Islamic Theology: the first in the world. Mother of five and Nana to six, she is best known as The Lady Imam.