Jan comes from Bremen in Germany. He was awarded an M.A. in Middle East Studies and Arabic from the University of St Andrews followed by an M.Phil. in Islamic Studies and History from the University of Oxford. His doctoral research is a study of household slavery in medieval Islamic society, focusing especially on the Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt and Syria. He is interested in Islamic cultural and social history and in slavery as a cross-cultural phenomenon.
Jan’s research is based primarily on documentary sources. He uses the manuscripts of the al-Haram al-Sharif in Jerusalem and listening certificates from Damascus to investigate the social status and integration of slaves and freed slaves into Mamluk society. His project will advance the understanding of the position of slaves in the cultural and social life of the late medieval Middle East.
His project is supported by an AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership studentship awarded by the Scottish Graduate School for Arts & Humanities.