Black Beards & Blue Helmets: Jihad, Peace-keeping, and Islamic Universalisms in the Bosnia Crisis

03/11/20166:00 pm-7:30 pm
Tariq Rafi Lecture Theater, Habib University

Abstract of the Talk:

The 1992-1995 war in Bosnia-Herzegovina was a defining moment of the post-Cold War order, pivotal to the development of UN peacekeeping and the project of European integration. Less well-explored is Bosnia’s significance throughout the Muslim world and the numerous solidarity efforts that emerged during the war. As a predominantly Muslim country in Europe, Bosnia presented opportunities and dilemmas for universalist projects in both the West and the Muslim world. This lecture traces two of the most important attempts to embody Islamic solidarity with Bosnia: foreign volunteers in the Bosnian army (“mujahidin”) and military units seconded to the United Nations peacekeeping forces by predominantly Muslim countries, including Pakistan.

About the Speaker:

Darryl Li is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago and has held post-doctoral appointments at Columbia University and Yale Law School. Li is writing a book under contract with Stanford University Press on transnational jihad movements in the international legal order. He is also at work on a project funded by the Social Science Research Council on migrant labor in private military industries. Li holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology & Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University and is a graduate of the Yale Law School.