Author Archives: Nick Walsh

Dr Takriti Awarded an Honourable Mention for the British-Kuwait Friendship Society Book Prize

Dr Abdel Razzaq Takriti’s Monsoon Revolution: Republicans, Sultans, and Empires in Oman, 1965-1976 (OUP, 2013) has been awarded an Honourable Mention for the British-Kuwait Friendship Society Book Prize in Middle Eastern Studies, administered by the University of Cambridge

The BKFS Prize is the most prestigious UK-based book award in the field of Middle Eastern Studies. The citation read:

“The author provided in this valuable book a thorough study of the Dhufar revolution and the popular armed struggle by drawing on a wide range of archival and nearly lost oral sources, due to the age of the people involved. He succeeded in retrieving and revising an almost lost history of an epical moment in Omani history and Arab revolutions. In 10 chapters across 340 pages with supporting appendixes, Takriti was also successful in contextualizing the revolution within the revolutionary movements in the 1960s and the decolonization process that was spreading across the south within the realm of the ‘Bandung spirit’.

In sum the Monsoon Revolution is a valuable academic contribution to the fields of the history of Oman, Middle East and Gulf studies, British imperial history, anti-colonial history, revolutions and political theory. Its value is apparent to students, scholars and informed readers of the history of the region and the transnational anti-colonial and liberation movements. Takriti has achieved his aim of contributing to an ‘appreciation of that struggle and the world to which it belonged'”

Almost fifty books submitted by fourteen publishers were considered by the judges this year, covering the humanities and social sciences, including art and architecture, anthropology, history, international relations, language, law, politics and religion.

Established in 1998, the prize is awarded each year to the value of up to £10,000 for the best scholarly work in English on the Middle East which has been published in its first edition in the United Kingdom. Normally the chronological remit of the prize is from the rise of Islam until the present day, but outstanding scholarly entries from the pre-Islamic era may also be considered.

Marriage, Civil Partnerships & Gay Rights: contemporary debates in historical perspective

Julia Moses will be taking part in a panel discussion at King’s College London on the 22nd October 2014.

Further information available at

In the last two decades, significant progress in gay rights has brought public recognition and controversy in relation to previously ‘underground’ relationships and desires. With the 2013 Same-Sex Couples Act, heterosexual marriage in Britain has been extended to homosexual couples. The right to be married has become a powerful symbol of equal citizenship. Equality campaigners are calling for civil partnerships, currently only available to gay couples, to be equally extended to straight couples.

But for some, marriage still seems outdated and not fit for purpose. Marriage as an institution is in flux and under scrutiny – should it reflect individual desires? Or civil obligations? Should it still be a key site of religious faith? Is it a flexible institution that can be reshaped according to contemporary mores? Or does it reflect traditions and values that will resist the new demands of sexual equality?

Debates on modern marriage are nothing new, and marriage has a long history of being reworked according to changing social needs. Already in the sixteenth century, Britain controversially introduced civil marriage as a non-sacramental alternative to marital unions sanctified solely by the Church. Understanding the longer history of the shaping and reshaping of marriage can help shed light on its current controversies. This panel discussion brings historical and legal scholars into dialogue with contemporary controversies over the ‘marriage questions’ of the twenty first century.

Social networks 1450-1850: an interdisciplinary conference at the University of Sheffield 16-17 July 2015

The conference is a two-day event, which brings together historically minded scholars with an interest in social networks from a range of disciplinary backgrounds to explore the concepts, methodologies, and findings of their research.

Confirmed speakers:

  • Edward Muir, Clarence L. Ver Steeg Professor in the Arts and Sciences (Northwestern)
  • Emily Erikson, Assistant Professor of Sociology (Yale)
  • Mark Philp, Professor of History (Warwick).

The call for papers is available here on the conference website.  The deadline for submission of proposals is 31 January 2015.

For further information or to submit a proposal, please contact the organiser Kate Davison (Sheffield) at
Sponsored by the Wolfson Foundation and Sheffield Centre for Early Modern Studies

Abdel Razzaq Takriti’s new book receives coverage in the New York Review of Books

Dr Abdel Razzaq Takriti’s new book on the history of the Dhufar Revolution, Monsoon Revolution: Republicans, Sultans, and Empires in Oman, 1965-1976 (OUP 2013), has received coverage in an article in the August 14 edition of the New York Review of Books.

Andalusia or Al-Andalus? Why History Matters – by Sir Keith Burnett

We are excited to announce that, to mark history graduations this week, the Vice-Chancellor has written a very special blog on why history matters, to him (as a physicist!), for us as individuals, for society, and for the University. Reflecting on the destruction of cultures, in periods as widespread as Moorish Spain and Nazi Germany, Sir Keith Burnett reflects with deep anxiety on our own times: