Kingdom without Borders: Saudi Expansion in the World
6-8 September 2007
Attendance by invitation only
Kingdom without Borders intends to explore a number of issues related to Saudi political, economic, social, religious, media and cultural expansion in the World.
This expansion has recently become the subject of debate and controversy. The conference aims to highlight the parameter of this expansion and its consequences on the receiving societies, world politics, the intellectual and religious public spheres, local social and cultural developments, and international relations.
The conference brings together scholars and policy makers from Europe, the USA, Asia and the Middle East. In two days of open discussions among commentators from a variety of perspectives, contemporary trends of Saudi expansion will be examined, exploring their roots as well as likely future development and consequences.
The multiplicity of perspectives and areas of expertise brought to bear on these questions should allow a balanced understanding of the phenomenon. The conference will no doubt re-evaluate and challenge many of the current literature on Saudi expansion and connections with the world.
This first conference will focus on the general aspects of Saudi expansion with the hope that later more focused workshops will follow to map Saudi connections in specific local contexts in the Arab-Muslim worlds and the West.
PART I: SAUDI CONNECTIONS: GENERAL OVERVIEW
This sections aims to provide a general forum that situates Saudi expansion in its historical context. Relevant questions include
To what extent is Saudi expansion a product of local Saudi concerns for legitimacy?
To what extend is Saudi expansion a product of the weakening of other regional Arab powers that had in the past more acumen and intellectual heritage to play a leading role in initiating political, social and religious connections?
To what extent is this expansion a product of the weakening of Arab society and civil institutions in general and economic underdevelopment?
To what extent is this expansion a product of Western encouragement and promotion of Saudi Arabia as a crucial player in regional, local and world politics?
The session focuses on the historical and structural factors both in Saudi Arabia and the Arab, Muslim and Western worlds that paved the way for this unexpected Saudi expansion. Furthermore, it assesses the receptiveness of constituencies and the open door policies, allowing Saudi expansion unprecedented presence in very distant locations. This sheds light on both old and new mediators (Western, Arab, Saudi) through whom Saudi expansion is enforced in distant lands, for example cultural brokers, economic and political entrepreneurs, intellectuals, and other agencies.
Posted by Main at 11:10 PM. Filed under: News And Views •