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.
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.
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).