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Faculty of Divinity

 

Biography

 

Safet is an anthropologist of sacred landscapes, syncretism and post-conflict interfaith relations. He joined the University of Cambridge in 2020, first as Research Associate in Interfaith Relations, and then as Teaching Associate in Anthropology of Religion. He is currently also a Research Associate at Fitzwilliam College and a Member of the University's Research Integrity Advisory Panel. 

At the Faculty of Divinity, he convenes 'Understanding Contemporary Religion' (A6); 'Shared Sacred Heritage: Anthropological Approaches' (D2b), an MPhil module 'Contemporary Religious Conflict: Ethnographic Approaches', and co-convenes 'Religious Encounter' (B9) and the Academic Summer School in Inter-faith Relations. 

Prior to Cambridge, Safet taught a wide array of anthropological courses at SOAS University of London, the University of Bristol, Goethe University Frankfurt and Goldsmiths, University of London. He holds a PhD in Anthropology from Goldsmiths, an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge (Hughes Hall) and BA degrees in History of Art and Sociology from the University of Sarajevo and Kenyon College.

Safet's research first and foremost considers the historical and contemporary relations between Christians, Muslims and Roma in Bosnia. It builds upon his long-term ethnographic fieldwork in the Dinaric Bosnian highlands, as well as stints of fieldwork across Bosnia, the Basque Country, Palestine, Israel, and archival research in Sarajevo and the Hague. He has written on syncretic landscapes, temporality and historicity, war crime archives, political agency of nonhuman beings and ontological approaches to the question of home. He is the author of Waiting for Elijah: Time and Encounter in a Bosnian Landscape (2018, 2021) and the co-editor (with Marija Grujić) of Post-Home: Dwelling on Loss, Belonging and Movement (2019). His current major projects investigates syncretic cosmologies, nationalism and subterranean rivers in south Bosnia.

Safet is the Principal Investigator on the Shared Sacred project, which focuses on the spatial and temporal modes of proximity between persons and communities of ‘different’ faith. For this project, he was awarded Public Engagement Starter Fund by the University of Cambridge to curate an exhibition of anthropological photography on Shared Sacred Landscapes. 

Over the next four years, following a large-scale grant from the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST), Safet will be co-leading a research network titled Traces as Research Agenda for Climate Change, Technology Studies, and Social Justice (TRACTS). This project brings together scholars from disciplines of the social sciences and humanities with artists, decolonial activists, memorialisation experts and legal professionals to bridge current cultural, political and geographical gaps in research on traces. 

He is also part of the Research Team on a four-year project titled A Red Golden Legend: Muslim Hagiographic Experiences in the Former USSR and Popular Democracies, supported by the French National Research Agency (ANR). 

Safet is a co-founder of the Xenia Series: Seminars in the Anthropology of Travel, Tourism and Pilgrimage, with Professor Tom Selwyn and Geoff DeVito. He has previously worked on a large-scale ERC project into transitional justice in Bosnia and Spain and has co-founded the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research of Visual Culture in Sarajevo. He has been recipient of a number of prestigious research awards (including the Open Society Foundations' Civil Society Scholar Award, 2015) and teaching recognitions.

Research

syncretism and violence; post-conflict inter-faith relations; time and temporality (especially waiting); home, belonging and migration; other-than-human, supernatural and interspecies engagements; subjectivity and affect; solitude and loneliness; hope and the future; anthropology of karst and subterranean water; Balkans, "Europe" and other tropes.

Publications

Key publications: 

 Time and Encounter in a Bosnian Landscape


Books

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2021) Waiting for Elijah: Time and Encounter in a Bosnian Landscape. Paperback edition, with a new foreword by Marko Živković. Articulating Journeys: Festivals, Memorials and Homecomings, Vol. 1. New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books. 

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2018) Waiting for Elijah: Time and Encounter in a Bosnian Landscape. Articulating Journeys: Festivals, Memorials and Homecomings, Vol. 1. New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books. 

Edited volumes

HadžiMuhamedović, S. and M. Grujić (eds.) (2019) Post-Home: Dwelling on Loss, Belonging and Movement (Special issue). Ethnoscripts 21(1).

Articles and essays

HadžiMuhamedović, Safet (2021) ‘My Grandmother Drank the Qur'an: Liquid Readings and Permeable Bodies in Bosnia’. In L. McCormick Kilbride, S. Kotva and R. Jackson Ravenscroft (eds) Theologies of Reading: Positions and Responses (Special issue). CounterText 7(1): 73-89.

HadžiMuhamedović, Safet (2021) ‘Locating Pandemic Grief in Sarajevo: Georgic Notes Against Self-Isolating Regimes’. Forum Bosnae 91-92: 308-26.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. and M. Grujić (2019) ‘Thinking Post-Home: An Introduction’. In S. HadžiMuhamedović and M. Grujić (eds.) Post-Home: Dwelling on Loss, Belonging and Movement. Special issue of Ethnoscripts 21(1): 1-29.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2019) ‘Flow and Constraint: Syncretism and Nationalism Along a Bosnian Sinking River’. In: Richard Povall (ed.) Liquidscapes: Tales and Tellings of Watery Worlds and Fluid States. Dartington: art.earth imprint: 223-9.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2018) ‘Syncretic Debris: From Shared Bosnian Saints to the ICTY Courtroom’. In Ann Wand (ed.) Tradition, Performance and Identity Politics in European Festivals. Ethnoscripts 20(1): 32-63.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2018) ‘Articulation as a Political Act? On a Study of Palestinian Shrines’. Anthropology News, 4(1): 1-8.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2016) ‘Grid Desires, or How to Tame a Three-Headed Dragon’. Anthropology News, 2(1): 1-9.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2014) ‘The Tree of Gernika: Political Poetics of Rootedness and Belonging’. In Penny Dransart (ed.) Living Beings: Perspectives on Interspecies Engagements [ASA Monographs]. Oxford: Bloomsbury, 53-72.

HadžiMuhamedović, S. (2013) ‘Bosnian Sacral Geography: Ethnographic Approaches to Landscape Protection’. In Josep-Maria Mallarach (ed.) Spiritual Values of Protected Areas of Europe. German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, 56-62.

Teaching and Supervisions

Teaching: 

 

Paper Convenor and Lecturer at the University of Cambridge:

  • from 2021: Understanding Contemporary Religion (A6)
  • 2021: Shared Sacred Heritage: Anthropological Approaches (D2b)
  • from 2021: Contemporary Religious Conflict: Ethnographic Approaches (MPhil Pathway in Religion and Conflict)
  • from 2021: Academic Summer School in Inter-faith Relations (Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme)
  • from: 2022: Religious Encounter (B9; with Professor Esra Özyürek)
  • from 2022: Special Topics in Social Thought: Dislocated Identities in a Fragmenting World (with Professor Tom Selwyn and Jens Haendeler; Open Society University Network Spring Course in cooperation with Al-Quds Bard and SOAS University of London)

Before coming to the University of Cambridge:

  • 2016-2019: Social Theories (University of Bristol);
  • 2018: Anthropology of Landscape (University of Bristol);
  • 2016-2019: Anthropology of Kinship (University of Bristol);
  • 2016-2019: Anthropology of Islam (University of Bristol);
  • 2019-2020: Anthropology of Gender (SOAS University of London);
  • 2019-2020: Issues in the Anthropology of Gender (SOAS University of London);
  • 2015-2016: Encountering Gender and Religion: Theoretical and Methodological Implications (Goethe University Frankfurt);
  • 2019 - ongoing: Summer School in Anthropology of Tourism, Travel and Pilgrimage (SOAS University of London);
  • 2015: Anthropology of Religion (Goldsmiths University of London);
  • 2014: Politics, Economics and Social Change (Goldsmiths University of London);
  • 2016-2019: Human Challenges (University of Bristol);
  • 2012-2013: Anthropological Methods (Goldsmiths University of London);
  • 2014-2015: Qualitative Methods and Case Study Research (SOAS University of London);
  • 2016-2019: Peoples, Culture and Language (University of Bristol).

Safet has supervised a large number of undergraduate and postgraduate dissertations in anthropology. He welcomes research proposals within his areas of expertise.

Teaching Associate in Anthropology of Religion
Research Associate, Fitzwilliam College
Affiliated Researcher, Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme
Dr Safet HadziMuhamedovic

Contact Details

Email address: 
G17, Faculty of Divinity
01223763042
Available for consultancy

Affiliations

Person keywords: 
religious plurality
interfaith relations
religion and conflict
shared sacred landscapes
anthropology of religion

Moodle

Current students and supervisors can access the Faculty’s Moodle page by clicking on the image below.