2012-2013 Spalding Family Lecture on Diversity and Tolerance
The Arab Awakening: Islam and the New Middle East
This lecture draws from Professor Ramadan's recent book, The Arab Awakening: Islam and the new Middle East. He explores the opportunities and challenges across North Africa and the Middle East, asking: can Muslim countries bring together Islam, pluralism and democracy without betraying their identity? Will the Arab world be able to reclaim its memory to reinvent education, women's rights, social justice, economic growth and the fight against corruption? Can this emancipation be envisioned with Islam, experienced not as a straitjacket, but as an ethical and cultural wealth? He argues that the debate cannot be reduced to a confrontation between the modern and secular versus the traditional and Islamic. Professor Ramadan demonstrates that both approaches are in crisis and that the Arab world has an historic opportunity to stop blaming the West, to jettison its victim status and to create a truly new dynamic.
Tariq Ramadan, PhD
Professor Ramadan holds an MA in Philosophy and French literature and a PhD in Arabic and Islamic Studies from the University of Geneva. In Cairo, Egypt, he received one-on-one intensive training in classic Islamic scholarship from Al-Azhar University scholars. Through his writings and lectures he has contributed substantially to the debate on contemporary Islamic issues, Islamic revival in the world, and Muslims in the west. Professor Ramadan is active both at the academic and grassroots levels, lecturing internationally on theology, Islamic law and jurisprudence, applied ethics, philosophy, social justice, economy, politics, interfaith and intracommunity dialogue.
Spalding Family Fund