University of Warsaw
Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies
The Department was established in 1964 as an independent Chair for Arabic and Islamic studies. It was created and headed by Professor Józef Bielawski, the dean of Polish Arabists. The chief aim of the Department was to create a comprehensive base for the knowledge of the Arab and Islamic World in Poland.
During this period over 400 students completed their studies at the Department (obtaining M.A. degree) and 20 doctor's theses were defended. As a result of the activities of Professor Bielawski and his pupils the essential library of publications on the Arab and Islamic world was prepared for the Polish public.
The Department boasts the publication of a history of classical Arabic literature followed by a bulky, two-volume history of modern Arabic literature, first of its kind not only in Poland but in the West in general. The scholars of the Department authored the first Arabic/Polish dictionary and a grammar of the Arabic Language. This work was completed by over twenty volumes of translations of the most important Arabic literary works (by Al-Farabi, Ibn Hazm, Al-Hamadhani, Usama Ibn Munqidh, N.Mahfuz, Gh. Kanafani, T. al-Hakim, Y. Idris and many others) as well as textbooks in Arabic for the students. In the field of Islamic studies two volumes of general presentation of Islam were prepared by J. Bielawski. The work in the field of Islamic studies was crowned by J. Bielawski's translation of the Qur’an. Arabic culture was presented in the Short dictionary of Arabic culture (1971), as well as in a monograph on the book in the Arab and Islamic world.
This work has been continued under the pupil and successor of J. Bielawski, Professor Janusz Danecki. He devoted his attention to Arabic linguistics, which led to the publication of the first grammar of Arabic in Polish (1994) as well as of the Arabic-Polish dictionary (1996, co-authored by Dr J. Kozłowska). Since 1994 the Department has been publishing its own journalStudia Arabistyczne i Islamistyczne containing articles in Arabic, English and French.
Teaching staffFull professors:
Research interests: Arabic linguistics and modern Islam
Main contact languages: Arabic, English, French, GermanKrystyna Skarżyńska-Bocheńska
Research interests: modern Arabic literature
Main contact languages: Arabic, FrenchMarek M. Dziekan
Research interests: classical Arabic culture, Islam; ethnology
Main contact languages: Arabic, German, English, Russian
University professors: Ewa Machut-Mendecka
Research interests: Arabic theatre, modern Arabic prose; gender studies
Main contact languages: Arabic, English, RussianDanuta Madeyska
Research interests: history of the Arab world, the sira folk literature;
Main contact languages: Arabic, English, Russian
Assistant professors:Paulina Barancewicz-Lewicka, Ph.D.
Research interests: Mediaeval history, Mamluk studies
Main contact languages: Arabic, English, French, Russian Ahmad Nazmi, Ph.D.
Research interests: history of contacts between the Slavs and the Arabs, Arabic geographical literature
Main contact languages: Arabic, EnglishKatarzyna Pachniak, Ph.D.
Research interests: Ismaili studies, Arab political thought, Islamic philosophy
Main contact languages: Arabic, English, French, Russian, Italian
The Program of Studies
The studies last five years; of those the first year is of general, preparatory character, and during the subsequent four years students take courses according to the specialisation they choose. The student has the opportunity to follow one of seven different specialisations:
1. Classical Arabic literature
2. Modern Arabic literature
3. Islamic studies
4. History of the Arab world
5. Arabic linguistics
6. Problems of the modern Arab World
7. Folklore in the Arab World
There is a possibility of choosing a completely individual curriculum.
Each of these specialisations requires that the student should attend a minimal number of courses during the four years of studies usually one seminar per year and altogether 3-4 specialized subjects.
Besides, each student is required to take general courses in Arabic, Islam, Arab history, geography and literature. The students should also take courses of their own choice in any other faculty (Warsaw University or any other European University).
The studies end with a submission of an M.A. thesis prepared under the supervision of a professor. The M.A. degree is bestowed after a general examination conducted before a special committee.
The students may pursue their studies on the level of Ph.D. in two fields: literature and linguistics. The conditions of study are to be arranged individually with the respective professor (supervisor).
Polish students are admitted after passing entry examinations covering two foreign languages and elements of Polish grammar. A general orientation in the field of their future study is also required.
Foreign students study at their own expense; the university demands that a fixed fee be paid. They are also required to enter a course in the Polish language. At present, a parallel English curriculum is being considered. Obligatory courses:
1. Arabic Grammar
2. Practical Arabic
3. A dialect of Arabic (usually Egyptian)
4. Translating of Arabic texts
5. Essentials of Islam
6. Geography of the Arab World
7. History of the Arab World
8. History of Arabic and Islamic Studies
9. History of Arabic Literature
10. Second Oriental Language (Persian, Turkish, Hebrew) Students can major in:
1- Classical Literature
2. Modern Literature
4. Islamic Studies
6. Political Problems of the Arab World
7. Ethnography of the Arab World Contact:
Uniwersytet Warszawski - Wydział Neofilologii
Instytut Orientalistyczny - Zakład Arabistyki i Islamistyki
Krakowskie Przedmieście 26/28
PL 00-297 Warszawa, Poland