Serena Tolino is Professor of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and co-director of the Institute for the Study of the Middle East and Muslim Societies at the University of Bern, where she also leads the project TraSIS: Trajectories of Slavery in Islamicate Societies. Three Concepts from Islamic Legal Sources, financed by the Swiss National Science Foundation. In the project she focuses on the concept of the umm al-walad.
Laura Emunds is a PhD student based at the University of Bern. She received her Master’s degree in Islamic Studies from Hamburg University in 2020. Within the framework of TraSIS, her workpackage centers the kitāba (or: mukātaba), a contract between an owner and his or her slave stipulating that the latter will obtain freedom after the fulfilment of contractual obligations. In her research, she aims at combining approaches from legal history with social history.
Laura Rowitz is a researcher at University of Bern currently working in Beirut. She received a master’s degree in Islamic Studies from Hamburg University in 2018 and worked as a research assistant in Hamburg and Bern. Her current research centers on the concept of the kafāla in a legal historical perspective. Part of TraSIS, her PhD project, examines both classical and modern legal discourses on the guarantee in Islamic law. Tangibly the research focuses on jurists’ interpretations of the kafāla in contemporary Middle Eastern states as an instrument for child tutelage and labor migration control.
Omar Anchassi is a Postdoctoral researcher at the University of Bern. He was previously an Early Career Fellow in Islamic Studies at the University of Edinburgh, and a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Exeter and at the KFCRIS in Riyadh. His contribution to TraSIS focuses on the historical development of the legal categories of the umm al-walad, the mukātaba and kafāla in non-Sunni juristic thought.