Friday 29 January 2021

ENSIE committee member joins University of Amsterdam

Liana Saif, a member of the ENSIE managing committee, has been appointed assistent professor in the History of Western Esotericism in the Middle Age at the History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents at the University of Amsterdam. This is, of course, the leading and largest centre in Europe for the study of Western Esotericism, and so Dr Saif's appointment thus marks another step in the integration of the study of Islam and esotericism into the study of Western Esotericism.

Dr. Saif (Ph.D, 2012) is a historian of Islamic esotericism and the occult sciences. With a medieval focus, she has a special interest in the exchange of esoteric and occult knowledge between the Islamic and Latin ecumenes. Her book The Arabic Influences on Early Modern Occult Philosophy was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2015. She is currently preparing a long-awaited critical translation from Arabic into English of Maslama b. Qāsim al-Qurṭubī’s (d. 964) Ghāyat al-ḥakīm, known in its Latin translation as the Picatrix. She has conducted research on the tenth-century secret brotherhood Ikhwān al-Ṣafāʾ (The Brethren of Purity), the pseudo-Aristotelian Hermetica, and Jābir ibn Ḥayyān (Geber in Latin).