Brannon Ingram Assistant Professor of Religion, Department of Religious Studies

Brannon D. Ingram is a specialist in the study of Islam in modern South Asia and South Africa, with a particular focus on Sufism and traditionally educated Muslim scholars (ulama). He received his B.A. in Religion from Reed College, his M.A. in Islamic Studies from Leiden University, and his Ph.D. in Religious Studies (2011) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Professor Ingram is currently completing a monograph on the global network of Islamic seminaries based at the Dar al-Ulum Deoband in north India, examining how this network has shaped debates about Sufism, ethics and politics in the locales where Deobandi scholars have exerted the most influence, including India, Pakistan and South Africa. He is especially interested in how Deobandi scholars have sought to implement their reformist vision of Islam in the public sphere via popular texts written for a lay Muslim audience, and how the Tablighi Jama'at (now the world’s largest Muslim revivalist organization) emerged out of Deoband’s reformist project. Other research interests include the history of Western representations of the ‘mystical’ in Islam and practices of reading and Qur’an interpretation in colonial India. His research has been supported by the Fulbright, the Social Science Research Council, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, among others. At Northwestern, he regularly teaches the Introduction to Islam as well as advanced courses on Sufism, Islamic Law, the Qur’an, and Reform and Revival in Modern Islam.

Selected Works

“Crises of the Public in Muslim India: Critiquing ‘Custom’ at Aligarh and Deoband,” South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 38, 3 (2015): 403-18.

“What is a Public? Notes from South Asia,” (with J. Barton Scott), South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 38, 3 (2015): 357-70.

“Public Islam in Post-Apartheid South Africa: The Radio Islam Controversy,” Critical Research on Religion 3, 1 (2015): 72–85.

“The Portable Madrasa: Print, Publics and the Authority of the Deobandi ‘Ulama,” Modern Asian Studies 48, 4 (2014): 845–871.

“Sufis, Scholars and Scapegoats: Rashid Ahmad Gangohi and the Deobandi Critique of Sufism,” The Muslim World 99, 3 (2009): 478 – 501.

“René Guénon and the Traditionalist Polemic,” in Olav Hammer and Kocku von Stuckrad, eds. Polemical Encounters: Esoteric Discourse and its Others, Leiden, The Netherlands: E. J. Brill, 2007: 201 – 226.