On the Heritage of Multifarious Sociological Thought: (Tattooed) Memories of a Meeting with Abdelkébir Khatibi, professor, researcher and writer. I had the good fortune to study the ‘sociology of the Arab world’ with Professor Abdelkébir Khatibi, which (might!) surprise some people. This was in 1973, when I was a young student pursuing my sociology degree. I can say, with sincere gratitude, that the few courses I was able to take with him introduced me to an unorthodox line of sociological inquiry and resultantly a different way to teach sociology. It was indeed an initiation to the ‘concept’ armed with what the epistemology of social science would have termed ‘epistemological vigilance’, and which fully embodies, as I see it, the concept of the ‘double critique’ in the Khatibi approach to ‘words and things’. This was all the more relevant as the course dealt with the issue of identity in Arab societies, conceptualized through the question, ‘who are we?’ (Constantin Zureik). That was, in fact, the issue with which intellectual discourse in general and sociological discourse in particular, at the time, was nearly obsessed, even though that is no longer the case today. The issue of identity was to be
Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2012
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