The School of Oriental and African Studies invites applications for the SOAS Leverhulme Research Leadership Award PhD Studentship in London in 2022.
Using archives assembled by colonial-era collecting and those that remain in situ in Sumatra, the project aims to produce a ground-breaking, holistic and contextualized understanding of the writing and intellectual traditions of Islamic South East Asia in the 18th and 19th centuries. It will look at the surviving manuscripts, not solely as individual texts, but as books embedded in libraries as part of a specific social and intellectual context.
This project focuses on three case studies:
- The Palembang royal library, looted by the British in 1812 and by the Dutch in 1821, and dispersed across institutional collections in several countries;
- The libraries of religious schools in the Minangkabau highlands digitized by the Endangered Archives Programme (EAP 144); and
- Personal libraries from Aceh, again digitized by the EAP (EAP 329).
Worth of Award
The project offers two fully funded MPhil/PhD scholarships.
The proposed PhD research must be focused on an intensive analysis of material from at least one of the case studies named above, and must contribute to the overall aims of the project.
Minimum entry requirements include
- A good Master’s-level degree (or overseas equivalent) in a relevant subject (i.e. literary, historical, cultural, philological, or Islamic studies of insular South East Asia);
- Advanced proficiency in Malay/Indonesian (other relevant languages, including Arabic, Acehnese, Minangkabau or Javanese are welcome in addition);
- Experience and expertise working with archive material, especially Jawi manuscripts, and in digital humanities approaches to archives, or a willingness to expand your skills in these areas;
- A willingness to work as part of the larger research team and to contribute to the overall aims of the project.
How to Apply
You can access the online application form for the SOAS Leverhulme Research Leadership Award here.
Deadline: Scholarship applications must be received no later than 23:59 (GMT) on April 30, 2022.