Akahori Masayuki


Prof. Akahori Masayuki is an anthropologist whose major field of research is the Middle East.

He received the degree of Master of Sociology from the University of Tokyo in 1986. Then the Japan Ministry of Education, Science and Culture sent him to Egypt, where he studied at Cairo University and Alexandria University for three years. He became a full professor at Sophia University in 2007 and currently the Dean of the Faculty of Global Studies (FGS) and the Director of the Center for Islamic Studies (SIAS).

Originally he conducted the field work among the Bedouins in Egypt, and one of his first articles received the 1st Takashima Award of the Japan Association for Nilo-Ethiopian Studies in 1995. Recently he is concentrating himself in the study of popular Islam, particularly in veneration of saints and holy relics. He has been leading the joint research of that field for more than twenty years.

He has also contributed to some academic associations and currently a member of directors of the Japanese Society of Cultural Anthropology, the Society for Near Eastern Studies in Japan, and the Japan Association of the Middle East Studies.

His works includes three edited books in Japanese, a monograph in English, a Japanese translation of the book in English, and articles and essays in Japanese and English;

“Relationship between God and People in the Three-Axis Framework of Sufism: A Comparison to Japan’s Traditional Religion, Shintō,” in Tonaga Yasushi (ed.), The Bridge of Cultures: Potentiality of Sufism, Kyoto Kenan Rifai Sufi Studies Series 2, Kyoto: Kenan Rifai Center for Sufi Studies, 2017

“Towards a Dynamic View of Sufism and Saint Veneration in Islam: An Anthropological Approach,” Kyoto Bulletin of Islamic Areas Studies 8 (2015): 57-68

“Islamic Saints and the Islam of Saints: A Study of Popular Religion,” The Journal of Sophia Asian Studies 31 (2013): 3-16

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