Inaugural Lecture: Professor Jaakko Hameen-Anttila
'When East meets West - cultural contacts around the Mediterranean'
Professor Hameen-Anttila is the new Iraq Chair of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures, University of Edinburgh.
Over several millennia, the various cultures around the Mediterranean have developed in contact with each other. Scientific inventions, economic innovations, literary genres, and philosophical and religious ideas have easily crossed linguistic, cultural, and religious boundaries. There have been several periods of intense activity of cultural transmission between, e.g., the Arab-Islamic and the Western cultures. The nascent Arab-Islamic culture was to a large extent based on the legacy of Late Antiquity, culminating in an intense period of translation of Greek texts into Arabic (750--1000), and a few centuries later a similar phenomenon of massive translation from Arabic into Latin and vernacular languages took place in Europe. This mutual influence has been beneficial to both cultures and helped them to attain new heights of human culture.
Lecture is open to all and free to attend.