Speaker: Boris Liebrenz, Saxon Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Leipzig
Respondent: Jessica Goldberg, UCLA
Boris Liebrenz studied history and Arabic philology at Leipzig University and is a research fellow at the Bibliotheca Arabica project. His publications explore documentary and manuscript sources from several eras, from early Arabic papyri to 18th-century merchant letters. His second book, Die Rifāʽīya aus Damaskus: Eine Privatbibliothek im osmanischen Syrien und ihr kulturelles Umfeld (Leiden: Brill, 2016), was awarded the Annemarie Schimmel Research Prize in 2017. Recent projects include an edited volume The History of Books and Collections through Manuscript Notes (special issue of the Journal of Islamic Manuscripts, 2018), _The Waqf of a Physician in Late Mamluk Damascus_ (Berlin: EB, 2019), and a forthcoming edition and study of an Aleppine weaver’s notebook (with Kristina Richardson, to appear in the Bibliotheca Islamica series of the Orient Institut Beirut). After postdoctoral positions in Bonn, Berlin, and New York City, Liebrenz returned to Leipzig and the Bibliotheca Arabica and is working on the micro-historical sub-project Libraries between the Mamluk and Ottoman Era. His commitment, as well as his passion, is to unearth the history of manuscripts and collections, and to identify the people and institutions connected with them, through the wide variety of manuscript notes.