Muslim Worlds

New Permanent Exhibition at the Ethnologisches Museum Berlin

In four showrooms spread over a total of 850 square metres, the exhibition “Welten der Muslime” (“Muslim Worlds”) broaches a range of subjects that continue to play an important role in contemporary Muslims’ perception of themselves and others: Using the example of architecture, such as the richly decorated wall of a guest house from Afghanistan, the gender-specific use of space is addressed, as well as the pronounced association of women with private space and of men with the public sphere – attributions that have become the subject of controversial debates. On the basis of the outstanding collection from Turkestan in today’s Central Asia, the exhibition explores various questions such as: what can historical objects reveal about the identity and self-perception of their respective source communities? And what is the significance and meaning of such objects in these societies today? The complexity and many facets of the religion of Islam, its orthodox and mystic dimensions, as well as phenomena related to everyday religious practice are illustrated by objects of very diverse Muslim provenience.

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