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Thursday, October 18, 2018 at 4:30pm to 6:00pm
White Hall, 110
123 Central Ave., Ithaca, NY 14850, USA
Febe Armanios, Middlebury College, and Bogac Ergene, University of Vermont, give a lecture that will consider jurisprudential debates surrounding alcohol consumption since early Islamic times and will survey how various Muslim communities have historically oscillated between leniency and stringency in enforcing established rules. The discussion will also reflect on modern attitudes towards alcohol consumption, intoxication, and other related topics. Modern scientific tools, including those enabling the measurement of alcohol per volume (APV) content, have been increasingly utilized to determine, with more precision, whether varied beverages comply with ancient rules and traditions. The implications of such developments are vast since everything from kombucha and kefir to fruit juices and soda can contain traces of alcohol. Also, in many Muslim countries, the growing popularity of faux libations, such as non-alcoholic beer and non-alcoholic wine, has generated concerns among some religious authorities regarding the propriety of their consumption. By exploring these issues, the lecture will assess how context-dependent religio-legal sensitivities have shaped the consumption of different beverages and brews, in the past and present.