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Home > Archives > Previous years: Workshops and Colloquie > Conferences and Workshops 2014–2015 > Modernizers: Changing science & society in the Middle East and North Africa (1870s-1930s)

Modernizers: Changing science & society in the Middle East and North Africa (1870s-1930s)

International Conference

June 2015 Wednesday 24 & Thursday 25
9:00–17:00, Room Mondrian, 646A
University Paris Diderot*

Organisation and financial support:
Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowships Programme, European Union (EuroMoroccanScience, FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IEF Grant agreement nº 329548)

Scientific committee:
Francisco Javier Martínez, Pascal Crozet,
Laboratoire SPHERE, UMR 7219

Re-constructing a local genealogy of the scientific modernization in North Africa and the Middle East is still a pending task. Research on modern Arab-Islamic scientists, physicians and engineers will help expand the collective memory of modernization in those countries by adding new, often badly-known or forgotten actors to its ranks. Biographies will also help illuminate the intrinsic connection existing between science and society, showing how science has always been a necessary element in plans for national independence, social change and democratic rule. This conference will focus on the biographies of some late 19th-early 20th century scientists from Morocco, Egypt, Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Syria


Programme, acess map to download (1.1 Mo)
To Thursday June 25


9:00 – 9:30
Francisco Javier Martínez, Pascal Crozet.

Feza Günergun
(Department of the History of Science, Istanbul University, Turkey)
Reconciling novelty and tradition in science : Gazi Ahmed Muhtar Pasha (1839-1919),
Ottoman military officer, envoy and reformist.

10:30 Coffee Break

Francisco Javier Martínez
(MC & SPHERE, UMR 7219, France)
Black, rural, rebel, modern: assembling the many lives
of the Moroccan doctor Mahboub ben al-Mahmoud (1888 – circa 1970).

12:00 – 13:00
Méropi Anastassiadou
(INALCO, Paris, France)
Nationalist philantropy ? The involvement of physicians
in Constantinople’s Greek Literary Syllogue in the early 20eth century.
[in French]

Ebubekir Ceylan
(Yunus Emre Institute, Turkey)
Jafar al-Askari: The Life of an Ottoman soldier and his role in Modern Iraqi Army.

16:00 Coffee Break

Pascal Crozet
(CNRS, SPHERE, UMR 7219, France)
Between Paris and Cairo: the professional career of an Egyptian astronomer, Ismail Mustafa (1826-1901).
[in French]

17:30 – 18:30 Meltem Kocaman
(Department of the History of Science, Istanbul University, Turkey)
Kamuran Sirri (d. 1936): Biography of a Turkish electrical engineer in the age of modernization.



9:30 Şeref Etker
(Independent Scholar, Istanbul (Turkey)
Political chemistry across the Baghdadbahn: A personal history of Dr. Cevat Mazhar.

10:30 Coffee Break

11:00 Pierre Ageron
(Laboratoire de mathématiques Nicolas Oresme
 & IREM, Université de Caen, France
Science, reform and autonomy in Morocco:

Mawlây Ahmad bin ‘Abdallâh al-Tanânî, known as al-Suwayrî (1811-1902).

12:00 – 13:00 Yücel Yanıkdağ
(University of Richmond, USA)
Dr. Mazhar Osman: Psychiatry, Social Pathology and Modernization
in the Late Ottoman Empire and early Republican Turkey.
(titre à confirmer)

15:00 Hossein Masoumi-Hamedani
(Science Department, Center for the Great Encyclopedia, Tehran, Iran)
(The Two Aspects of Scientific Modernization in Iran : Some Case Studies).

16:00 Betty S. Anderson
(Boston University, USA)
Science Education at the Syrian Protestant College.

17:00 Coffee Break

17:30 Francisco Javier Martínez, Pascal Crozet
Closing remarks.


Room mondrian, 646A (Level 6), University Paris Diderot, Building Condorcet, 10 rue Alice Domon et Léonie Duquet 75013 Paris

Access via public transportation

Metro line 14 & RER C / Stop: Bibliothèque François Mitterrand. Metro line 6 / Stop: Quai de la Gare Bus 64 / Stop: Tolbiac-Bibliothèque François Mitterrand Bus 62 & 89 / Stop: Avenue de France or Bibliothèque Rue Mann Bus 325 / Stop: Watt

Interactive campus map showing metro, RER, and bus stops: