History Speaks EP3 – Self and Society in Sufism

In this episode of History Speaks, Saadia Yacoob speaks with Oludamini Ogunnaike and Sara Abdel-Latif about the self and society in Sufi thought from its early formative period in Nishapur to the early modern and contemporary Sufi movements in West Africa. They discuss Sufi conceptions of the self as dynamic and fluid, the role of the paradox in Sufi thought, and the subversion and authorization of hierarchies in Sufi pedagogy.   

Saadia Yacoob



Sara Abdel-Latif is an Assistant Professor at the Institute of Islamic Studies at McGill University. She specializes in Sufism, Gender and Qur’anic Interpretation.

Sara Abdel-Latif



Oludamini Ogunnaike is an Assistant Professor of African Religious Thought and Democracy at the University of Virginia specializing in the intellectual and aesthetic dimensions of West African Sufism and Yoruba oriṣa traditions. He received his PhD in African and African American studies and Religion at Harvard University. He is the author of Poetry in Praise of Prophetic Perfection: A Study of West African Madīḥ Poetry and its Precedents (Islamic Texts Society, 2020) and Deep Knowledge: Ways of Knowing in Sufism and Ifa, Two West African Intellectual Traditions (PSU Press, 2020).

Oludamini Ogunnaike

History Speaks

History Speaks
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The past, present, and future are intimately bound to one another. In short, history matters. History Speaks situates the Islamic intellectual tradition within its socio-political context and connects it to pertinent issues today. Join Saadia Yacoob as she speaks with Islamic studies scholars about their work on gender, Iaw, and theology in the Islamic tradition. In each episode we move across different time periods and regions to discuss how aspects of Islamic history speak to concerns today.


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