VAHMSconnections: Exploring Islam’s Contribution to Asia with Ibn Battuta

VAHMSconnections event on July 30th, 2020 was organized online via Zoom for the first time, and it featured a public lecture by Dr. Niall Christie, which was moderated by VAHMS director Shahid Abrar-ul-Hassan.

This presentation explored some of the contributions that Muslim communities made to the culture of medieval Asia. The presentation was guided by the travel record of Muhammad ibn Battuta, a Moroccan traveller who between 1325-1349 visited Muslim communities located as far east as China, as far south as India and south-east Asia, and as far north as Central Asia.


Presenter: Dr. Niall Christie

Dr. Niall Christie is Chair of the Department of History, Latin and Political Science at Langara College, Vancouver and is an Adjunct Professor in Medieval Studies at the University of Victoria. He received his PhD in Islamic History from the University of St Andrews, Scotland. Since 2012 he has been an Instructor in History at Langara College, teaching courses on the history of Europe and the Muslim world. Dr. Christie is the author of numerous articles and two books: The Book of the Jihad of Ali ibn Tahir al-Sulami (d. 1106): Text, Translation and Commentary (Farnham: Ashgate, 2015); and Muslims and Crusaders: Christianity’s Wars in the Middle East, 1095-1382, from the Islamic Sources (second edition; Abingdon: Routledge, 2020).


Moderator: Shahid Abrar-ul-Hassan

Shahid has been working as a language educator and researcher in multiple roles. He currently works as a professor of language education in Vancouver, BC. He has previously taught at the University of British Columbia and the University of the Fraser Valley. He also serves as a subject expert with BC Ministry of Advanced Education. Moreover, he is an affiliate faculty at public universities in China and the USA. He has also performed several key leadership roles with international professional associations of English language educators in the USA and Korea. He was honored with an Alumni Achievement Award by the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, CA, USA, his alma mater.