May Hall

      TILL MOSTOWLANSKY

      Visiting Scholar (Apr – Jul 2018), Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of Hong Kong
      Ambizione Research Fellow, Swiss National Science Foundation

      Overview

      I am a Sin Wai-Kin Junior Fellow at the Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences and a joint- Postdoctoral Fellow at the Faculty of Arts, The University of Hong Kong. I am an anthropologist and scholar of modernity, infrastructure, charity, development and Islam in contemporary Central Asia and at its historical crossroads between Russian, British and Chinese influence. I hold an MA from the University of Vienna in Austria and completed my PhD at the University of Bern in Switzerland. Before moving to Hong Kong, I lectured at the University of Bern and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore. I have also held honorary appointments at the Universities of Sussex and Bern.

      My first book Islam und Kirgisen on Tour: Die Rezeption “nomadischer Religion” und ihre Wirkung (Islam and Kyrgyz on Tour: The Perception of “Nomadic Religion” and Its Effects, Harrassowitz 2007) focuses on Islam and nomadic identity in Kyrgyzstan.

      Contact

      Room 214, May Hall, The University of Hong Kong
      Tel: (852) 3917-2461
      Fax: (852) 2559-6143
      Email: mostow@hku.hk

      Selected Publications

      Monographs

      Azan on the Moon: Entangling Modernity along Tajikistan’s Pamir Highway

      2017 Azan on the Moon: Entangling Modernity along Tajikistan’s Pamir Highway. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press.

      Islam und Kirgisen on Tour: Die Rezeption “nomadischer Religion” und ihre Wirkung

      2017 Islam und Kirgisen on Tour: Die Rezeption “nomadischer Religion” und ihre Wirkung (Islam and Kyrgyz on Tour: The Perception of “Nomadic Religion” and Its Effects), Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.

      Edited special issues

      International Journal of the Sociology of Language

      2017 With Brook Bolander (eds.). “Language and Globalization in South and Central Asian Spaces.” International Journal of the Sociology of Language (De Gruyter) 247.

      2016. With Andrea Rota (eds.). “A Matter of Perspective? Disentangling the Emic-Etic Debate in the Scientific Study of Religion\s.” Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (Brill) 28(4-5).

      2015. With Karénina Kollmar-Paulenz, Anke von Kügelgen (eds.). “Thematic issue on Central Eurasia.” Asiatische Studien/Etudes Asiatiques (De Gruyter) 69(3).

      Articles in peer-reviewed journals

      Accepted. “Faraway Siblings, So Close: Ephemeral Conviviality Across the Wakhan Divide.” Modern Asian Studies (Cambridge University Press).

      2017. “Building Bridges Across the Oxus: Language, Development and Globalization at the Tajik-Afghan Frontier.” International Journal of the Sociology of Language (De Gruyter) 247, 49–70.

      2017. With Brook Bolander. “Language and Globalization in South and Central Asian Spaces.” International Journal of the Sociology of Language (De Gruyter) 247, 1–11.

      2016. “‘The very act of cutting’: Ethnomethodology, Interaction and the Emic-Etic Debate.” Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (Brill) 28(4-5), 400–420.

      2016. With Andrea Rota. “A Matter of Perspective? Disentangling the Emic-Etic Debate in the Scientific Study of Religion\s.” Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (Brill) 28(4-5), 317–336.

      2014. “Where Empires Meet: Orientalism and Marginality at the Former Russo-British Frontier.” Etudes de lettres (University of Lausanne) 2-3, 179–196.

      2014. “The Road Not Taken: Enabling and Limiting Mobility in the Eastern Pamirs.” Internationales Asienforum/International Quarterly for Asian Studies (University of Heidelberg) 45(1-2), 153–170.

      2013. “‘The state starts from the family’: Peace and Harmony in the Eastern Pamirs.” Central Asian Survey (Taylor & Francis) 32(4), 462–474.

      2012. “Making Kyrgyz Spaces: Local History as Spatial Practice in Murghab (Tajikistan).” Central Asian Survey (Taylor & Francis) 31(3), 251–264.

      2011. “Paving the Way: Ismaili Genealogy and Mobility along Tajikistan’s Pamir Highway.” Journal of Persianate Studies (Brill) 4, 171–188.

      Book chapters

      Research Projects

      Since then I have pursued two overarching research interests:

      First, I am intrigued by the anthropological study of routes, roads and pathways, and the anthropology of infrastructure more generally. This research interest, which I have followed since the early days of my PhD fieldwork, frames my latest monograph Azan on the Moon: Entangling Modernity along Tajikistan’s Pamir Highway (University of Pittsburgh Press 2017).

      Second, and emerging from my take on the Pamir Highway as a Soviet gift, I research past and present forms of charity and giving – nowadays often labelled “development” – from the perspective of anthropology and history. In this regard, since 2012 I have worked on the transformative force of Shia Muslim networks which dissect the borderlands of Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and Tajikistan and mediate connectivity to places across Asia.

      Grants & Awards