Dror Weil

Chaire : Chaire sécable de l'IISMM
Site(s): Page personnelle

Dror Weil is a historian of early modern Asia at the Faculty of History, University of Cambridge. His teaching and research interests focus on scientific and other textual exchanges between the Islamicate world and China, largely between the 13th and 18th centuries. He received his PhD from Princeton University, and was a recipient of a post-doctoral fellowships at Tel Aviv University, the Berlin Center for the History of Knowledge and Max Planck Institute for the History of Science. In his research, Dror explores the intersection of religious communities and scientific knowledge through the prisms of scholarly practices and translation of Arabic and Persian texts in China, as well as the larger global circulation of knowledge beyond Europe during the late-medieval and early modern periods. In that context, he has published on themes such as China's participation in the Islamicate book culture during the 17th and 18th centuries, the 14th-century transformation in China's reception of Arabo-Persian astronomy, the role of Chinese-Muslims as agents of astral knowledge in late imperial China, the Persian sources of a medieval Chinese formulary of Islamic medicines and the histories of Arabo-Persian libraries, literacies and scholarly practices in late imperial China.

Dror Weil will take part of the Visiting Professors Program designed by EHESS, on proposal of Marie-Paule Hille (CCJ) dans le cadre de la chaire sécable de l'IISMM




Between Religion and Science: Entanglements of Scientific Knowledge and Religious Literature in Pre-Modern Asia

This talk will focus on the significant role of Islamic communities and Islamic texts in circulating knowledge with scientific applications in premodern Asia. Looking at three main axes of transmission - philology, astral knowledge and medical knowledge, this talk will bring to light the entanglement of religious textuality, religious practice and the production of scientific knowledge. Special attention will be given to cross-regional movements of knowledge and the different forms of translation that took place during the late medieval and early modern periods.

  • Le 23 mars 2022 de 14h30 à 16h30 - Salle 25-B, Bâtiment EHESS-Condorcet, EHESS, 2 cours des humanités 93300 Aubervilliers

Dans le cadre du séminaire "Histoire culturelle byzantine et méditerranéenne", Filippo Ronconi (Maître de conférences, EHESS)


Translating Islam from the Periphery: Scholarly Practices and Translation Methods of Islamic Texts in Pre-Modern China

My talk will tell the rather unique story of the hundreds of Arabic and Persian works that circulated in China between the 13th and 18th centuries at the libraries of Yuan, Ming and Qing courts and in private libraries throughout the empire. It will explore the scholarly practices by which Chinese savants read, interpreted and made sense of Arabo-Persian texts, while bridging the cultural and epistemological gaps. It will shed light on some of the inherent challenges of domesticating a foreign textual archive at the margins of a literary tradition, and the incentives to transform the traditional manuscript-based scholarship into print.

  • Le 30 mars 2022 de 13h à 16h - Salle C, Centre le Vieille-Charité, 2 rue de la Charité 13002 Marseille

Dans le cadre du séminaire "Asie du Sud et culture persane (XVIe-XXe siècle). Productions savantes, traductions, interactions", Fabrizio Speziale (directeur d'études, EHESS)


Excavating Medicine: The Oral, Aural and Graphical Layers in the Transmission of Medical Experience between the Islamicate World and China

My talk will examine the oral, aural and graphical aspects inherent to the transmission of medical knowledge across Asia. It will survey the use of textual devices and methods of articulation that bring to light the importance of the non-verbal dimensions in the transfer of medical experience across geographical, temporal, theoretical and linguistical boundaries. The talk will focus on the transmission of medical experience in Asia, and in particular on the exchanges between Arabic, Persian and Chinese medical traditions.

  • Lundi 4 avril 2022 de 10h30 à 12h30 - Salle 25-A, Bâtiment EHESS-Condorcet, EHESS, 2 cours des humanités 93300 Aubervilliers

Dans le cadre du séminaire "Sciences et savoirs de l’Asie orientale dans la mondialisation (XVIe-XXIe siècle)", Catherine Jami (directrice de recherche, CNRS)


Situating Muhammad: The Negotiation of Islamic and Extra-Islamic Chronologies in the Transmission of Islamic literature to China

By examining the ways by which Chinese authors discussed the emergence of Muhammad and the Islamic religion, this talk will bring to light the methods by which Chinese premodern historians negotiated the inherent complexity of the concepts of time, chronology and History in a multi-cultural environment. It will concentrate on early Chinese references to the emergence of Islam, as well as on attempts by translators of Arabic and Persian texts to Chinese in the 17th and 18th centuries to reconcile between Islamic, pre-Islamic and Chinese views of history.

  • Mardi 5 avril 2022 de 14h30-16h30 - Salle 25-A, Bâtiment EHESS-Condorcet, EHESS, 2 cours des humanités 93300 Aubervilliers

Dans le cadre du séminaire "Le culte des saints musulmans en Chine : approches historique et anthropologique", Marie-Paule Hille (Maître de conférences, EHESS)