The TraSIS team organised its first project conference last week, in collaboration with the BCDSS (Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies). We were honoured to welcome scholars from more than ten countries to discuss questions related to slavery in Islamic law and Muslim societies. The conference, which took place on the shores of Lake Murten, featured a keynote lecture by Prof. Christian Müller (CNRS, Paris) on ‘New Sources for Muslim Social History? Premodern Legal Documents from a Comparative Perspective’. Over the next day and a half, papers were presented on topics ranging from race and slavery in West Africa to concubinage in Mughal South Asia. There were panels on Slavery, Abolition and Race in North and West Africa, Clientage and Relations of Dependency, Labour and the Regulation of Slavery in Legal and Non-Legal Sources, Dependency and Household Relations in Early Legal Sources, and Concubinage and the Status of the Umm al-Walad. Notwithstanding the great diversity of subjects discussed, our conversations featured certain overarching themes, including the category of slavery itself, (un)freedom, notions of dependency, and the complex relationship between normative texts, Muslim legal thinking, and legal and social practices. Stimulating conversation continued at lunch and around the dinner table, as well as at walks on the lakeshore and in the town of Murten. We were very pleased to host this wonderful group of colleagues in Switzerland and hope to see them again soon and continue state of the art research in this rich field of inquiry.