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John Lieder and his Mission in Egypt: The Evangelical Ethos at Work Among Nineteenth-Century Copts

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2004-10
Abstract: 

The English Church Missionary Society (CMS) dispatched a contingent of missionaries to Egypt in 1825. This article analyses the methods and impact of that contingent. The schools that the CMS missionaries introduced are cast not as vehicles of enlightenment — as is frequently the case in mission historiography — but as technologies of power. Specifically, the article recounts how the head of the mission, the Reverend John Lieder, deployed Lancaster schools among the Coptic Christians of Cairo to effect not merely a spiritual, but further, a cultural conversion of this Orthodox community. Lieder, his predecessors, and his contemporaries in the Mediterranean field sought to instil in the Copts the “evangelical ethos” of industry, discipline, and order. The article links this CMS project of cultural conversion to the process of state-building in Egypt. Indeed, Lieder was a pioneer purveyor of technologies of power that would prove indispensable to late-nineteenth-century elites in their efforts to produce, in the subaltern strata of Egyptian society, industrious and disciplined political subjects resigned to their lowly positions in the Egyptian social order.

Document type: 
Article

Manoubia and Her Son

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2011-10
Document type: 
Article

The ‘sectarianization’ of Egyptian society

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013-08
Document type: 
Article

Quick Thoughts: Paul Sedra on the Pope’s Visit to the Middle East

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014-05
Document type: 
Article

Life or Death: Anxiety About the Urban in 1950s Egyptian Cinema

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-04
Abstract: 

Life or Death (Haya aw mawt) is a classic of Egyptian cinema, widely interpreted retrospectively by scholars as an ode to progress, modernity, the nation, and the chief emblem of such, the burgeoning city. Indeed, the film was included in the list of ‘the most important 100 Egyptian films,’ commissioned by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina and assembled by Ahmed el-Hadari, Samir Farid, and Kamal Ramzi in 2006. Released in 1954, the film is associated by critics and scholars with the 1952 Free Officers’ Revolution, which paved the way for the end of empire in Egypt, Gamal Abdel Nasser’s rise to power, the rule of Egypt by Egyptians – all in all, a spirit of nationalism and civic duty.

 

This paper suggests that scholars have, in their enthusiasm for the pathbreaking cinema that was emerging in the revolutionary 1950s, neglected the suspicion and ambivalence about the urban that pervade a film like Life or Death. Essentially, in focusing upon the bustling urban life that the film so richly illustrates, scholars have set aside this invocation of death in the title as unimportant or inconsequential. Yet, this is a film much concerned with death. That is to say, this is a film about the potential death of a way of life, a death whose perceived imminence is lamented to no small extent in the film.

Document type: 
Video
File(s): 
Sedra Cinema Lecture.mp4

Church-State Relations in Egypt

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014-02
Document type: 
Article

The Salaita case and Middle East studies

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014-09
Document type: 
Article

Thinking about Egyptian Politics from the Bottom Up

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2014-05
Document type: 
Article

Faten Hamama and the ‘Egyptian Difference’ in Film

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-01
Document type: 
Article

Quick Thoughts: Paul Sedra on the IS Massacre of Egyptian Copts in Libya

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2015-02
Document type: 
Article