(download a pdf copy of the programme here)

We will provide a report on this event in due course,

but in the meantime, the programme and other details are available here.

Many thanks to all who made it such a success.

Reformers and Intellectual Reformulation

in Contemporary Islam


A Two-Day Symposium, 29-30 January 2015

Held at SOAS and QMU London


A collaboration between:

Study of Religions, SOAS, London

School of History, Queen Mary University

Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter

Sponsored by the Islamic Reformulations Project




Information on Conference Venues and how to reach them are available here


Pre-conference Event

Wednesday 28th January 2014


Evening, 6.00pm: Opening of Elaine M Goodwin’s Exhibition “Songs of the Desert”, Wolfson Gallery, SOAS Library, SOAS MAIN BUILDING.


Day 1: Senate Room, Senate House

Thursday 29th January 2014

0930 Opening Remarks: Conference Organisers

1000 Panel 1: The Reform of Muslim Philosophy and Spirituality

Mohammed Drammeh (Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies), “Ṭāhā ʿAbd al-Raḥmān and the Question of Philosophical Reform in Arab World”

Susan Gunasti (Ohio Wesleyan University), “Philosophy as Methodology: Elmalılı Muhammed Hamdî Yazır’s Spiritualism and Religious Reform in the Late Ottoman Empire”


1100 Coffee/Tea


1130 Panel 2: Reforming Muslim Theology

Katie Merriman (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), “Freedom By Our Own Hands: The Revolutionary Theology of Warith Deen Mohammed”

Simon Wolfgang Fuchs (Princeton University), “Denigration, Deception, and Denial: Muhammad Ḥusayn Najafī Ḍhakkō and the Limits of Shīʿī Reform in Pakistan”


1230 Lunch

1330 Panel 3:Patterns of Reform in Islamic Law

Junaid Quadri (University of Illinois at Chicago), “Muḥammad Bakhīt’s reformulation of the fiqh tradition in the face of modern science”

Jawad Anwar Qureshi (University of Chicago), “Countering Reform: Saʿīd Ramaḍān al-Būṭī (1929-2013) and the Parameters of maṣlaḥa

[Short Break]

David Warren (University of Manchester), “Yūsuf al-Qaradāwī and the Reform of the Islamic Legal (fiqh) Tradition”

Salman Younas (University of Oxford), “A Conservative Jurist’s Approach to Reform: Ashraf ʿAlī al-Thānawī on Women’s Political Leadership”


1540 Tea/coffee


1600 Panel 4: Reforming Muslim Hermeneutics

Kamran Bashir (University of Victoria), “The Interpretive and Revivalist Potential of Jāved Aḥmad Ghāmidī’s Principles of Exegesis”

Abdullah Sliti (Durham University), “Rational Authenticity: Ibn ʿĀshūr’s Potential Epistemological Reform of Tradition”

1700 Close


Brunei Lecture Theatre, SOAS). Thursday 29th January 2015, 7.00pm.  Admission is free; no pre-registration required.

1900 Public Lecture Professor Muhammed Qasim Zaman (Princeton University)
'The Contested Terrain of Sufism: British India and Pakistan"
Professor Qasim Zaman, Robert H. Niehaus '77 Professor of Near Eastern Studies and Religion at Princeton University, is a leading expert on modern Islamic intellectual movements, and the role of scholars in the theological, legal and political developments of contemporary Muslim thought.  He has authored and edited a number of seminal studies on the topic, including The Ulama in Contemporary Islam: Custodians of Change (2002), Schooling Islam: The Culture and Politics of Modern Muslim Education (2007), Princeton Readings in Islamist Thought (2009) and Modern Islamic Thought in a Radical Age (2012).  He was associate editor of the key text in the field, The Princeton Encyclopedia of Islamic Political Thought (2013).  In this lecture he will address the question of how Sufism in colonial South Asia and in contemporary Pakistan has fared between its continuing appeal and the sharp attacks on it, and how issues relating to reform, governance, and violence have shaped its course.

2030 Close


Day 2: Queen Mary University: morning sessions: Arts Two 3.20; afternoon sessions Francis Bancroft 1.13a

Friday 30th January 2014

0930 Panel 5: Political Activism and Quietism in Muslim Reform

Itzchak Weismann (Haifa University), “Saʿīd Hawwā of Syria: a Muslim Brother, Salafi, and Sufi”

Samer El-Karanshawy (Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies), “Muḥammad Mahdī Shams al-Dīn: Reform in Twelver Shī‛īsm as Antipathy to Political Islam”


1030 Coffee/Tea


1100 Panel 6: Reform from Within: Rethinking Tradition

Yasir Qadhi (Rhodes College), “Reformation or Reconstruction?Dr. Ḥatim al-ʿAwnī’s Critiques of Wahhabī Thought”

Omar Anchassi (QMUL), “On the Art of Removing One’s Turban: Fazlur Rahman, Zakāt and the Impossible State”


1200 Lunch (provided for both registered attendees and participants)


1400 Panel 7: Linking State Reform and Islamic Reform

Ayaz Asadov (Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies), “Muṣṭafā Ṣabrī’s Engagement with Islamic Renewal”

Philipp Bruckmayr (Vienna University), “Marginalized Reformists of Kelantan: Wan Mūsā b. Sāleḥ, his sons and their Indian and Cairene connections”

Bader Mousa Al-Saif           (Georgetown University), “The Role of Maḥmūd Shalṭūṭ and the Egyptian State in the Articulation and Production of Religious Reform in Mid-Twentieth-Century Egypt”


1530 Tea/Coffee


1600 Panel 8: Class, Power and Reform in Modern Islam

Vanja Hamzić (SOAS), “Mir-Said Sultan-Galiev and the Idea of Muslim Marxism”

Kamaluddin Ahmed (Freie Universitat), “Renewal Through Reform: The Contemporary Jurisprudence of Justice Mufti Muḥammad Taqī Usmānī”

1700 Closing Remarks

1715 Close

Make a free website with Yola