Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Prof. Abdulaziz Sachedina: Building Bridges between Western and Middle Eastern Approaches to the Study of Islam

Prof. Sachedina has devoted much of his scholarly time and effort in recent years to introducing theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of Islam in the Western academy to scholars of Islam in academic institutions in various parts of the Islamic world, and to fostering interfaith and intrafaith dialogue through various programs aimed at both Muslim scholars and Muslim youth. On research leave partly funded by the Contending Modernities Program at the University of Notre Dame, Prof. Sachedina served from February to May 2015, as the UNESCO Chair of Interreligious Studies at the University of Kufa, in Najaf, Iraq initiating new courses and programs to advance these goals, with the aim of furthering international cooperation and peace-building in troubled regions of the Middle East. Later that same year (June 2015-January 2016), he was a visiting scholar at Ferdowsi University in Mashhad Iran, where he taught courses on Western research methodologies in the study of Islam, and worked to advance the curriculum at seminaries in both Mashhad and Qom in the area of religious and theological ethics. He also taught a course in Islamic Bioethics, the current focus of his research, for physicians and graduate students pursuing doctoral studies in recently established programs in bioethics.

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