Current Institutional Affiliation
Professor, Religion Studies, Lehigh University

Award Information

International Dissertation Research Fellowship 2000
Institutional Affiliation (at time of award):
Religion, Duke University
Islamic Sufism Unbound: Tracing Contemporary Chishti Sabiri Identity

This project explores the internal practice and public articulation of institutional Sufism in post-colonial Pakistan through an examination of the use of ritual, sacred space and mass media by a particular lineage: the Chishti-Sabiri order. I will focus on the teachings, writings and enduring legacy of three modern spiritual masters (shaykhs) who combined pedagogy and practice with literary acumen to ground Chishti Sufism in a uniquely modern idiom. Based in Lahore, I will conduct ethnography among contemporary Chishti-Sabiri disciples and shaykhs along with manuscript research in public and private libraries. As a case study for Islam's debate with modernity, this research will examine how Sufism has accommodated itself to the shifting geo-political, social, technological and religious landscape of today's Pakistan.