The Carolina Duke Emory Institute for the Study of Islam
The Carolina-Duke-Emory Institute for the Study of Islam is a consortium that was active from 1997 until 2006 at the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the Department of Religion at Duke University, and the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University.
The rationale for CDEISI was based on the unique availability of faculty specialists at these Universities in the comparative study of Islamic religion in various regions, including South Asia, West Asia (Middle East), and the Maghreb (North Africa), in both the premodern and modern periods. At UNC, Duke, and Emory, students receive broad and in-depth graduate training in history of religions with a specialization in the Islamic tradition, much more so than at universities that rely mainly on Middle East area studies centers. What distinguished CDEISI is the insistence on the analytical and comparative dimensions of the study of religion, rather than a specialist emphasis on language, literature or politics and public policy issues; this placed the CDEISI venture firmly in the humanities, unlike the more politically instrumental Middle East area studies programs. The present and longstanding scarcity of graduate programs in Islam and the history of religions was dramatized by the growing number of new positions and announced vacancies in religion departments for specialists in Islam.
The principal programs of CDEISI focused on faculty lecture exchange between the N.C. Triangle universities and Atlanta, and graduate student semester exchange. This arrangement was designed to maximize scholarly interaction and to increase the areas of available expertise that can be shared among the participating universities.
About This Site
This site was designed to provide basic links to CDEISI and its participants. Since CDEISI if no longer functioning as a separate program, no updates are being added to this website.