Middle Eastern Studies: Islam and the Politics of Everyday Life in the Middle East
Course · 7.5 credits
This course aims to move beyond over-simplified and dichotomous approaches to the complex set of phenomena we refer to as ‘Islam’. It explores the complexity of the social processes defining, constructing and traversing Islamic discourse and Muslim practice.
Based on joint readings, discussions and presentations of recent academic research, this course theoretically and empirically explores the impact of Islamic discourse and Muslim practice in contemporary Middle Eastern societies, from social, political and cultural perspectives. Two main questions underpin the readings, discussions and assignments:
How do Islamic concepts, practices, norms and ideals (and debates thereupon) interrelate with broader socio-economic and political-strategic trajectories in the Middle Eastern region?
- What are the power effects of Islamic/Muslim discourse and practice (or the critique thereof), from individual, social, political, cultural, consumerist and strategic perspectives?
The course is organised in four thematic sections, to the following effect:
Theorising religion, power and representation in the Middle East.
Here the course addresses some essential theoretical perspectives for the study of religious discourse and practice in the Middle East. Central are anthropological and political scientific perspectives on religious discourse, power and representation.
Imagining religious order(s) and communities.
Here, the course turns to empirical perspectives on the role of religious discourse and practice in Middle Eastern societies – while keeping the theoretical engines running. The section starts by revisiting the complex relation of ‘religion’ and ‘politics’ in empirical detail and how it currently plays out in various national settings.
Religious consumption, affect, embodiment and visual (re)presentation.
Going beyond dichotomies such as sacred/secular, public/private and government/civil society, the third section explores realities outside of ‘traditional’ political institutions, contributing to the ‘fuzziness’ of religious discourse and practice and its relation to power and politics.
Individual specialisation, presentation & opposition.
The last two weeks of the course are devoted to an individual essay-project, where the student focuses on a topic of choice relating to Islam in the current Middle East and discusses it in relation to one or several theoretical perspectives covered during the course. Individual essays are presented during a final seminar, where the student also offers oral feedback on another student’s essay.
Further information: master [at] sam [dot] lu [dot] se
More information can be found at https://www.graduateschool.sam.lu.se/education/course-catalogue/profile-and-elective-courses/autumn-term-courses/islam-and-the-politics-of-everyday-life-in-the-middle-east-sims55
Requirements and selection
Student must have a Bachelor s degree equivalent to 180 credits.
Oral and written proficiency in English equivalent to English 6/B (advanced) from Swedish upper secondary school is a requirement. International qualifications will be assessed in accordance with national guidelines.
Seats are allocated according to: Previous college/university studies (APAV): 100 %.
English language requirements
Most of Lund University’s programmes require English Level 6 (unless otherwise stated under 'Entry requirements'). This is the equivalent of an overall IELTS score of 6.5 or a TOEFL score of 90. There are several ways to prove your English language proficiency – check which proof is accepted at the University Admissions in Sweden website. All students must prove they meet English language requirements by the deadline, in order to be considered for admission.
How to apply
Lund University uses a national application system run by University Admissions in Sweden. It is only possible to apply during the application periods.
Step 1: Apply online
- Check that you meet the entry requirements of the programme or course you are interested in (refer to the section above on this webpage).
- Start your application – go to www.universityadmissions.se where you create an account and select programmes/courses, during the application period.
- Rank your programme/course choices in order of preference and submit them before the application deadline.
Step 2: Submit documents
- Read about how to document your eligibility and how to submit your documents at www.universityadmissions.se. Follow any country-specific document rules for Master's studies or Bachelor's studies.
- Get all your documents ready: official transcripts and high school diploma (Bachelor's applicants), official transcripts and degree certificate or proof of expected graduation (Master's applicants), passport/ID and proof of English proficiency (all applicants).
- Prepare programme-specific documents if stated in the adjacent column on this webpage.
- Upload or send all required documents to University Admissions before the document deadline.
- Pay the application fee (if applicable – refer to the section below on this webpage) before the document deadline.
*Note that the process is different if you are applying as an exchange student or as a part of a cooperation programme (such as Erasmus +).
*If you have studied your entire Bachelor's programme in Sweden and all of your academic credits are in Ladok, you do not have to submit transcripts or your diploma when applying for a Master's programme. However, there may still be other documents you need to submit! See the link below.
*Svensk student? Läs instruktionerna om att söka till ett internationellt masterprogram på lu.se
Full programme/course tuition fee: SEK 13 750
First payment: SEK 13 750
Citizens of a country outside of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland are required to pay tuition fees. You pay one instalment of the tuition fee in advance of each semester.
EU/EEA citizens and Switzerland
There are no tuition fees for citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.
If you are required to pay tuition fees, you are generally also required to pay an application fee of SEK 900 (approximately EUR 100) when you apply at www.universityadmissions.se. You pay one application fee regardless of how many programmes or courses you apply to.
Read more about paying the University Admissions in Sweden application fee and exemptions on the University Admissions website.
*Note that there are no tuition or application fees for exchange students or PhD students, regardless of their nationality.
Scholarships & funding
Lund University Global Scholarship programme
The Lund University Global Scholarship programme is a merit-based and selective scholarship targeted at top academic students from countries outside the EU/EEA.
Swedish Institute Scholarships
The Swedish Institute offers scholarships to international students applying for studies in Sweden at Bachelor's, Master's, PhD and post-doctoral levels.
Country-specific scholarships and funding options
Lund University has agreements with scholarship organisations and funding bodies in different countries, which may allow applicants to apply for funding or scholarships in their home countries for their studies at Lund University.
- Scholarships/funding for students from Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia, Russia and Chile, among other countries
- US student finance
- Canada student finance