The Council for Arab-British Understanding, in collaboration with the Foundation for Science, Civilisation and Technology, hosts:
‘Islam, Modernity and the Enlightenment: A New Perspective'
By Samer Akkach
Thursday 3rd May 2007, 6:30pm
Lecture Hall, Royal Asiatic Society
14 Stephenson Way
London NW1 2HD
Euston/Euston Square/Warren Street
Samer Akkach is Associate Professor in Architecture, History and Theory, and Founding Director of the Centre for Asian and Middle Eastern Architecture (CAMEA) at the University of Adelaide, Australia. He is the author of Cosmology and Architecture in Premodern Islam and Abd al-Ghani al-Nabulsi; Islam and the Enlightenment.
Before the wholesale adoption of the European Enlightenment ideas by nineteenth-century Arab and Ottoman intellectuals, Muslim scholars of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries had their own intellectual program that dictated their exchanges with the West. It influenced the choices they had made and enabled them to deal confidently with the new emerging ideas. In a sense, it can be said that they had their own enlightenment. While the experience of the European Enlightenment is widely recognized as being most important for the emergence of modernity and the making of the modern world as we know it, the concurrent intellectual developments in the Islamic world, which is equally important for understanding Islamic modernity, are still largely unknown. This talk will explore aspects of the intellectual history of the Arab-Ottoman world in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries that shed new lights on the roots of modernity in Islamic thought, offering a new perspective that can redefines the beginning of modern history of the Middle East.
Chaired by Professor Mohamed M El-Gomati the deputy Chair of the Foundation for Science Technology and Civilisation (FSTC).
Open to the public. Seats are limited. First come, first seated basis.
For more details contact:
1 Gough Square
Phone: 020 7832 1310
Fax: 020 7832 1329