Lecturer in Arabic
31 Ashby House
Russell received his undergraduate degree from Northwestern University where his major was in French language and literature, with minors in African history and Arabic. He went on to obtain an MA from Stanford University in European cultural and intellectual history, followed by a second MA from Loyola University Chicago in Classics, where his studies focused on Greek tragedy, archaic Greek poetry, classical Greek historiography, and Indo-European linguistics. Russell then entered Princeton University as a PhD candidate in the Department of Near Eastern Studies. His coursework at Princeton concentrated on Islamic law, the history of the Islamic lands of the western Mediterranean, classical Arabic poetry and poetic theory, and Semitic linguistics. Russell has traveled and studied widely in the Middle East and North Africa, and has spoken at numerous conferences across the country and internationally on topics relating to the history and literature of the Islamic world.
“The Ransoming of Prisoners in Medieval North Africa and Andalusia: An Analysis of the Legal Framework”. Medieval Encounters 15 (2009), 317-354.
“The Plague in Islamic Lands: Juristic Responses from Andalusia and North Africa”. Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 10/2 (2010), 45-64.
“Aspects of Trade in the Western Mediterranean during the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries: Perspectives from Islamic Fatwas and State Correspondence”. Medievalia 32 (2011), 5-42.
“The Translation of Nature: al-Sharīf al-Idrīsi on the Plant Life of the Western Mediterranean”, in Translating the Middle Ages, ed. Karen Fresco (Ashgate, 2012).
“Contesting Jihad: Responses to the Almoravid Intervention in al-Andalus”, in Rethinking Jihad. ed. Elisabeth Kendall (I.B. Tauris, forthcoming 2013).
“Nomadic Populations and the Challenge to Political Legitimacy: Four Cases from the Medieval Islamic West”, in Political Legitimacy in the Islamic West. ed. Amira Bennison (Proceedings of the British Academy, forthcoming 2013).
“Anthologizing Islamic Sicily: Poetry and Historical Memory in the Durra Khatīra of Ibn al-Qattā‛ ”. Medieval Encounters, forthcoming.
“Diplomatic Immunity”, in Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam. ed. John Esposito (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009). Co-authored with Khaled Abu al-Fadl.
“Leadership”, in Princeton Encyclopedia of Islamic Political Thought. ed. Muhammad Q. Zaman (Princeton University Press, 2012).
20 biographical notices for the Dictionary of African Biography. ed. Henry Louis Gates Jr. et al. (Oxford University Press, 2012).: Ibn Rashiq al-Qayrawani, Abu al-Qasim al-Burzuli, Abu Bakr al-Turtushi, Yusuf b. Tashfin, al-Imam al-Mazari, al-Imam al-Hadrami, Abu ‛Imran al-Fasi, Muhammad al-Maghili, Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani, Abu Bakr al-Maliki, al-Raqiq al-Qayrawani, ‛Abd al-Rahman al-Qabisi, Ibn Wahb al-Misri, ‛Ali b. Yusuf, Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti, Ishaq b. ‛Ali, Tamim b. al-Mu‛izz, Abu Bakr b. ‛Abd al-Rahman, Shihab al-Din al-Qarafi, Sahnun al-Tanukhi, Abu Ya‛qub al-Tadili.
Abu ‛Imran al-Fasi: A Jurist of Medieval North Africa – a monograph-length study of the legal opinions of a prominent jurist of the mid-eleventh century.
“Fidā’ in Andalusia: An Analysis of the Legal and Historical Framework,” presented at Hybridity and Cultural Diffusion in Medieval Iberia, The University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI. October, 2007.
“The Translation of Nature: Al-Sharīf al-Idrīsi on the Plant Life of the Western Mediterranean,” presented at Translating the Middle Ages, The University of Illinois, Champagne-Urbana, IL. October, 2008.
“Sufis and Holy Men in Medieval Andalusia and North Africa,” presented at Comparative Mysticisms of the Middle Ages, University of Southern Florida, Tampa Bay, FL. February, 2009.
“The Plague in Islamic Lands: Juristic Responses from Andalusia and North Africa, ” presented at Rhetorics of Plague, State University of New York, Albany, NY. February, 2009.
“Hajj versus Jihad: Some Andalusian Considerations,” presented at Mirror Images: Challenges for Arabic and Islamic Studies, Villanova University, Philadelphia, PA. April, 2009.
“Jihad in a Time of Fitna: Three Views from the Islamic West,” presented at Rethinking Jihad, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. September, 2009.
“The Banu Zuhr of Seville: The Portrait of a Family in the Arabic Literature of Almoravid Andalusia,” presented at Re-Conceptualizing Literary History: The Foundations of Arabic Literature 7th – 17th Centuries, Yale University, New Haven, CT. April, 2010.
“Aspects of Trade in the Western Mediterranean during the 12th and 13th Centuries,” presented at Negotiating Trade: Commercial Institutions and Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Medieval and Early Modern World, State University of New York, Binghamton, NY. September, 2010.
“Abu Bakr al-Turtushi: An Andalusian Jurist in Fatimid Egypt,” presented at Patronage and the Sacred Book in the Medieval Mediterranean, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA. November, 2010.
“Resisting the Mahdi: Considerations on the Nature of Rebellion against Almohad Rule in the mid-Twelfth Century,” presented at the 46th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI. May, 2011.
“Nomadic Populations and the Challenge to Political Legitimacy: Three Cases from the Medieval Islamic West,” presented at Political Legitimacy in the Islamic West, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK. September, 2011.
“Defining Heresy; Three Treatises on Bida‛ from the Medieval Islamic West,”presented at the 222nd annual meeting of the American Oriental Society, Boston, MA. March, 2012.
“Anthologizing Islamic Sicily: Poetry and Historical Memory in the Durra Khatīra of Ibn al-Qattā‛ ,” presented at the 47th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI. May, 2012.
“Confronting the Colonizer: Abu al-Hasan ‘Ali ibn ‘Abd al-Salam al-Tusuli and the Early Jihad against the French in Algeria,” presented at the 7th meeting of the International Society for Islamic Legal Studies, Ankara, Turkey. May, 2012.
“Muslim and Non-Muslim Religious Minorities in the Medieval Mediterranean: The Case of Sicily and al-Andalus,” presented at Minorities in Islam / Muslims as Minorities, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC. October, 2012.