Course Descriptions

This is a listing of all credit-bearing courses offered by Bayan, generally organized by field, in fulfillment of degree program requirements in the M.Div. and M.A. degree programs at Chicago Theological Seminary. The courses are scheduled in the academic calendar in varying degrees of frequency, based on program requirements. Required core courses are more routinely offered, whereas elective courses are rotated to allow for greater variation and opportunity to study with diverse visiting faculty. Most courses are offered once every two academic years.

ISLAMIC STUDIES (Core Courses)

THE QURAN: COMPOSITION, COLLECTION, AND TEACHINGS

The Quran: Composition, Collection, and Teachings

Instructors: Dr. Joseph Lumbard, Dr. Maria Dakake

This course introduces students to the collection, compilation and standardization of the Qur’an along with its main features, structure, and themes. We will examine the different interpretive processes and approaches employed by exegetes, from the classical to the modern period, to yield meaning that is relevant to confront theological, legal and social issues. The course will also address the role of the Qur’an in everyday life and thought of a Muslim.

ISLAMIC THEOLOGY AND PHILOSOPHY

Islamic Theology and Philosophy

Instructors: Dr. Asad Ahmed, Dr. Hamid Mavani

This course is an introduction to the major figures, issues, discussions, and texts of Islamic thought as manifested in the interconnected domains of theology and philosophy. A developmental/ chronological approach will draw connections with other religious and philosophical traditions, and demonstrate confluence and change within Islamic thought over time. Students will also evaluate claims regarding “decline” in Islamic thought in connection to modernity.

ISLAMIC LAW AND LEGAL THEORY

Islamic Law and Legal Theory

Instructors: Dr. Asifa Quraishi-Landes, Dr. Hamid Mavani

This course explains the internal workings of Islamic law at its theoretical roots. It engages students with the tools of ijtihad (the mechanism of Islamic legal reasoning) with an eye to the interpretive methodologies of the various schools of Islamic law. It also explores the relationship between Islamic law and government and surveys two selected areas of substantive law: family and criminal law. It concludes with a look at modern Islamic legal and political reform.

HISTORY OF ISLAM

History of Islam

Instructors: Dr. Ovamir Anjum

This course outlines the expansion of Islam, the rise of the Umayyads; the Abbasid empire and successor states; the emergence of classical Islamic societies and material culture (including architecture, arts, literature); the Crusades and Mongol invasions and Muslim societies’ response; trade and exchange in the Mediterranean and Indian Oceans; the Ottoman/Safavid/Mughal empires; and the anti-colonial intellectual and political responses of new Muslim nation-states. The course provides a foundation for understanding contemporary Muslim societies and transnational Islam.

ISLAMIC ETHICS

Islamic Ethics

Instructors: Dr. Ozgur Koca

This course surveys the literature in Islamic ethical thought, identifying key themes and topics for Muslims committed to living Islam as a way of life. Students explore how diverse Muslims have chosen to navigate the challenges of global modernity. They also examine how Islamic principles can help Muslims live with integrity in contemporary American society.

Islamic/Muslim Studies (General Elective Courses)

THE LIFE, TIMES AND TEACHINGS OF THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD

The Life, Times and Teachings of the Prophet Muhammad

Instructor: Dr. Jonathan Brown

This course focuses on the life experiences and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad, taking into account the historical context, social norms, and religious atmosphere of pre-Islamic Arabia. Students learn about the Prophet’s character and qualities, his manner of leadership, and the impact of his example on subsequent generations of Muslims. Finally, students gain insight regarding the ways in which the Prophet is commemorated as part of Islamic sacred history.

UNIVERSAL MAXIMS IN ISLAMIC LAW AND BEYOND

Universal Maxims in Islamic Law and Beyond

Instructor: Shaykh Jihad Brown

The Maxims of Jurisprudence (al-qawāʾid al-fiqhiyyah) constitute a field in Islamic Law that enable a more supple approach to legal reasoning than “rote” or fixed methods. By means of these guiding “universals,” a nimble jurist is better empowered to join novel and emerging cases with judgments more in keeping with the ethical aims of sacred law. These universal maxims to provide an inherently Islamic style of reasoning that informs solutions and “ways forward” in socio-cultural situations—well beyond the field of jurisprudence—amid ordinary life decisions. This course will utilize case studies of contemporary issues that can be approached from the perspective of the maxims, accounting for the North American/Western contexts of Muslim life.

THE SUFI TRADITION - LITERARY AND CULTURAL DIMENSIONS

The Sufi Tradition - Literary and Cultural Dimensions

Instructor: Dr. Omid Safi

This course engages the concepts and themes represented in literary works from Islamic civilization that constitute esoteric or mystical interpretations of Islam. Key works of the sufi tradition will be analyzed and explored to understand the classical cultural and religious milieu. Themes explored in this class include the tradition of love mysticism embodied by Rumi, the relationship of the Qur’an and Prophetic experience to Sufi teachings, and transformation of the ego-self in light of human/divine love.

ISLAM IN AMERICA: US MUSLIMS NAVIGATING STATE POWER, THE MEDIA AND POPULAR CULTURE

Islam in America: US Muslims Navigating State Power, the Media and Popular Culture

Instructor: Dr. Su’ad Abdul-Khabeer

Students will contextualize different Muslim groups' experiences in light of major shifts in American culture and politics such as the Civil Rights movement, immigration, the Cold War, counter-cultures, and other factors. The course will shed light on the challenges facing Muslim Americans with respect to religious authority, popular culture, the media, and global politics, and various contemporary expressions of identity.

ISLAM IN BLACKAMERICA: FROM SLAVERY TO HIP-HOP

Islam in Blackamerica: From Slavery to Hip-Hop

Instructor: Dr. Sherman Jackson, Dr. Rudolph Ware

This course surveys the encounter between Islam and the black community in America, from the time that blacks were inducted into the New World, through the 19th and 20th centuries and into the era and phenomenon of Hip Hop. Inquiry assumes the multi-layered contexts of race, religion, culture, politics and history in America, as well as the relationship between America and the broader Muslim world. We will also look at the ways in which Blackamericans have sought to appropriate Islam and the various challenges it has confronted in seeking to indigenize the religion and establish its own authority within it.

ISLAM, GENDER AND SEXUALITY

Islam, Gender and Sexuality

Instructor: Dr. Sylvia Chan-Malik

This course explores ideologies of gender and sexuality in Islam. Readings address historical debates and rulings regarding gender and biological sex, sexual desire, and tracks shifts in attitudes surrounding both gender equality and sexual orientation as a global phenomenon and within Muslim societies. The course engages questions of agency, equality/equity between the sexes, interpretive possibilities, and the impact of social and scientific disciplines on how contemporary understandings are framed/reframed.

GLOBAL ISLAMIC MOVEMENTS AND IDEOLOGIES

Global Islamic Movements and Ideologies

Instructor: Dr. Ozgur Koca

This course is an introduction to the major figures, issues, ideologies, and texts of the 20th century and early 21st century of Islamic thought. We shall analyze the responses given to the challenges of modernity, postmodernity, colonialism, and post-colonialism. To this end, we will have a number of readings from Muslim philosophers and theologians (such as Seyyed Qutb, Mawdudi, S. Hossein Nasr, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, Hasan al-Turabi, Ruhollah Khomeini, Tariq Ramadan, Said Nursi, Fazlur Rahman, Khaled Abou el-Fadl, Fethullah Gulen, Abdulkerim Sourush, Mohammad Arkoun etc.) to familiarize ourselves with the concerns, tendencies, language and nomenclature of the contemporary Islamic thought.

CONTEMPORARY ISLAMIC THOUGHT

Contemporary Islamic Thought

Instructor: Dr. Hamid Mavani

Over the last two centuries, Muslim scholars and intellectuals have sought to engage with and respond to the specific challenges of “modernity, “secularization,” “Western hegemony,” and other extrinsic factors.” We will examine a range of influential thinkers and texts that have shaped the discourse on “reform,” “revival,” and “reconstruction of Islam.” The thinkers’ key ideas and themes will be studied in the context of their own particular time and circumstances.

ISLAM AND LIBERAL CITIZENSHIP

Islam and Liberal Citizenship

Instructor: Dr. Mohammad Fadel

The course explores political liberalism and its relationship to religion, particularly Islam and its intellectual heritage. Topics include secularization, religious critics of political liberalism, multiculturalism, and forms of constitutional law pertaining to religious freedom. Pre-modern theories of Islamic government, and modern Islamic political thought, will be engaged. Within this framework, students will reflect on how faith can, does and should work in connection with our personal, social and political freedoms.

ISLAM, SCIENCE AND ART

Islam, Science and Art

Instructor: Dr. Ozgur Koca

This course examines the role of contemplation and spirituality in Islamic art. Through examining samples of and texts about Islamic art, the course introduces students to the hallmarks of and approaches to Islamic art. The course also examines such aspects of Islamic art as the remembrance of God, aniconism and the social values of various Muslim cultures.

HISTORY OF SCIENCE AND THE MODERN WORLD

History of Science and the Modern World

Instructor: Dr. Omar Nasim

This course introduces the history of science in a way that surveys a number of critical issues: the place of science in the history of Islam, scientism and the idea of progress; science’s role in modernity; the emergence of the “scientist” and its implications; colonialism in the furtherance of scientific achievement; consequences of colonialism for science in Muslim societies; and a glimpse of the implication of this survey for understanding . The underlying thematic challenges Muslim audiences to rethink what they understand by history and science’s role in it and to disclose widespread assumptions that are rarely examined.

HOMO ISLAMICUS: EXPLAINING HUMAN HISTORY FROM AN ISLAMIC PERSPECTIVE

Homo Islamicus: Explaining Human History from an Islamic Perspective

Instructor: R. David Coolidge

In this course, we will discuss scientific descriptions of the Earth and Biological life, and the compatibility and/or incompatibility of these descriptions with an Islamic worldview. The focus of the course will be on the emergence of the human species with all of its cultural diversity, and how an Islamic worldview might compete with the intellectual trends that dominate secular educational institutions. Attention will be paid to each student’s subjective understanding of reality, and their own attempts to make sense of it all. As such, discussion of each student’s worldview and what informs it will be central.

Advanced Islamic Theology (Concentration Elective Courses)

ISLAMIC RATIONAL THEOLOGY: ‘ILM AL-KALAM

Islamic Rational Theology: ‘Ilm al-Kalam

Instructor: Shaykh Jihad Brown, Fouad Elgohari

A consistent system for affirming Islamic tenets of faith emerged in the 9th/3rd (CE/AH) centuries that would use reason as its primary instrument of argumentation. This programme—as a means of theological education and debate—would endure as the de rigeur method for Sunni theological inquiry until the turn of the 20th century. During this course, we will have occasion to identify the primary objectives and priorities of classical Kalam theology, as well as an opportunity to explore a number of contemporary themes in related fields of metaphysics and philosophy of religion.

ADVANCED ‘ILM AL-KALAM

Advanced ‘Ilm al-Kalam

Instructor: Shaykh Jihad Brown

This course will delve further into texts representing the classical Kalam theology approach, highlighting post- classical works of the 12th-15th centuries that reflect refinements and engagement with emerging concerns of the early-modern period. During this period of institutionalization and increased analytic rigour, methods and principles can be observed that might inform a contemporary engagement with current inquiries and conversations in the field of philosophical theology. The course will also expand on the exploration of contemporary philosophical themes and concerns, and how kalam theology might approach them.

CONTEMPORARY SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY

Contemporary Systematic Theology

Instructor: Shaykh Jihad Brown

The rigorous and logical method of Islamic rational theology (kalām) lends itself well to engaging various different yet connected themes of concern to a particular religious worldview. The aim of this course is to enable students to apply the methodologies of systematic theology to the affirmation and clarification of Muslim doctrinal priorities. The themes identified for treatment in this project will be informed by the standard inquiries and debates common to the field of philosophy of religion.

Islamic Leadership (Concentration Elective Courses)

ISLAMIC LEADERSHIP AND SPIRITUALITY

Islamic Leadership and Spirituality

Instructor: Dr. Walead Mosaad

This course provides an overview of models of religious leadership in the Muslim context, from both an historical perspective as well as a contemporary one. Students will study texts that describe the ideal components of Islamic leadership and spirituality and will build essential skills needed to operate as a leader in present-day Muslim settings with a focus on youth, education, finances, board relations, gender issues, counseling, issuing of religious edicts (fatawa), communication with the community, janaza services, conversion, and interfaith.

PREACHING AND PUBLIC PRESENTATION OF ISLAM

Preaching and Public Presentation of Islam

Instructor: Jihad Turk

This key leadership development course cultivates skills for effective preaching and public speaking about Islam, and enables emerging Muslim leaders to address questions involving Islamic law in a contextual manner. Topics include freedom of expression, living in pluralistic societies, gender rights and relations, governance, social justice, peace and violence, ethics and morality, and cultural flux. This course will prepare students to address a variety of audiences and contexts, including speaking to the media, to interfaith communities, to international audiences, and to civic groups.

NON-PROFIT LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT

Non-Profit Leadership and Management

Instructor: Necva Ozgur

This course introduces foundational Islamic principles for leadership and management, and elaborates on their application in the context of modern non-profit organizations. Areas such as board development, staff development, decision-making, transparency, financial management, fundraising, marketing, and community outreach are addressed.

FUNDRAISING STRATEGIES FOR RELIGIOUS NON-PROFITS

Fundraising Strategies for Religious Non-Profits

Instructor: Dr. Shariq Siddiqui

Religious organizations, often operating as non-profits, must find ways to raise funds for programs and operations. However, leaders in such organizations may not possess the requisite understanding of the strategies and tools available to effectively engage and secure support from various philanthropic sources. It is important for leaders to gain awareness of the current giving landscape, and of new approaches to fundraising involving digital platforms, social media, and marketing. This course equips learners with a sense of philanthropic trends, new fundraising approaches, and provides an opportunity to develop grant proposals, budgets, and fundraising action plans.

COMMUNITY ORGANIZING FOR MUSLIM AND INTERFAITH LEADERS

Community Organizing for Muslim and Interfaith Leaders

Instructor: Dr. Rami Nashashibi

While engaging social justice issues, community organizing has evolved as a distinct and widely adopted methodology over the last century and is credited, in part, to leading to the historic election of the country’s first African American President. This course examines community organizing within the context of the American Muslim experience, providing students with the opportunity to directly engage its strategies through an explicitly spiritual framework.

SOCIAL INTEGRATION AND CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

Social Integration and Civic Engagement

Instructor: Nadia Roumani

This course examines how Muslim American organizations and leaders have articulated the experience of living as a minority community in increasingly pluralistic society. Students will study opportunities and limits to social integration, political activism, and civic engagement emanating from religious identity and experiences, as well as from the dominant cultural and political framework. Students will gain understanding of the role of religion and religious communities in the public square.

EFFECTIVE ETHICS IN NEGOTIATED SPACES

Effective Ethics in Negotiated Spaces

Instructor: Shaykh Jihad Brown

The emergence of “secular” ethics and its departure from “religious” morality claims to have the equitable management of the needs and aspirations of citizenry as its purpose. While the field of contemporary ethics has achieved great successes in legislation, diversity, and standards of best practice, history has witnessed notable shortcomings in policy, inclusivity, and economic opportunity, to name a few. Some questions to be explore in this course include: “How do we differentiate between assumptions, ideals, personal aspirations, ‘groupthink’, and the ‘public good’?”, “What do our respective worldviews say about our particular ‘Others’?”, “What lessons can be learned from the historical ‘less than stellar’ performances of religion-informed management of civil-society, as well as modernist efforts?”

Islamic Education (Concentration Courses)

FOUNDATIONS OF ISLAMIC EDUCATION

Foundations of Islamic Education

Instructor: Dr. Susan Douglass

This course provides an introduction to Islamic educational thought, concepts and practices as developed within classical Islamic civilization. Through evaluation of translated primary sources and reflection on contemporary best practices, educators integrate knowledge and skills to facilitate religious education in Muslim school contexts.

INTRODUCTION TO THE ISLAMIC CULTURAL HERITAGE

Introduction to the Islamic Cultural Heritage

Instructor: Dr. Susan Douglass

This course provides a sampling of of classical Islamic literary texts in a variety of genres, including religious writings, poetry, frame tales, scientific writings, travel accounts, epistles, and other rich primary sources. The course also addresses trade, science and cultural exchange, and influences in areas of ceramics, metalworks, calligraphy, textiles, and architecture.

EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY AND ONLINE RESOURCES

Education Technology and Online Resources

Instructor: Munir Shaikh

Educators are increasingly expected to utilize technology effectively to facilitate learning. This course helps students develop their skills in authoring and publishing lesson plans, activities, rubrics, and resources for their elementary/secondary students, and in designing and facilitating interactive peer engagement in service to learning objectives. This is an online course.

SCHOOL LEADERSHIP, BOARD MANAGEMENT, CHANGE AGENCY

School Leadership, Board Management, Change Agency

Instructor: Habeeb Quadri

This course introduces Islamic principles for leadership and management, and elaborate on their application in the context of Islamic educational institutions. School leadership, governance, board structure and management, meeting management and fundraising will be addressed. Furthermore, the course will elucidate strategies for empowering stakeholders at all levels to be change agents.

CULTIVATING THE CAMPUS ENVIRONMENT – PROFESSIONAL LEARNING COMMUNITIES

Cultivating the Campus Environment – Professional Learning Communities

Instructor: Dr. Omar Ezzeldine

School administrators develop interpersonal skills and outlooks that enable them to exercise their professional mandate more effectively. Creating an atmosphere in which staff, faculty and students thrive depends significantly on the morale and tone created by the principal and administrators. The course focuses on fostering professional learning communities and dispositions reflecting a growth mindset, creativity, and differentiated instruction.

CRITICAL PEDAGOGY, FOUNDATIONS IN LEARNING THEORIES

Critical Pedagogy, Foundations in Learning Theories

Instructor: Dr. Amaarah DeCuir

Educators apply learning theories and practices that cultivate a lifelong love of learning as well as the intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual capacities of their students to be individuals discovering their own paths and to be of service to the world.

CURRICULUM DESIGN, DEVELOPMENT AND INTEGRATION

Curriculum Design, Development and Integration

Instructor: Karima Alavi

In this course, educators develop ideas, lessons and projects that offer interdisciplinary learning opportunities for their students. Appropriate opportunities for involving religious teachings and outlooks within a critical academic approach are also explored.

Islamic Chaplaincy (Core Courses)

THEORIES AND PRACTICES OF SPIRITUAL CARE

Theories and Practices of Spiritual Care

Instructor: Tahara Akmal

Study of the interrelationship of spirituality, care and counseling, focusing on how caregivers can respond to needs, traumas, and growth characterized as “spiritual.” Attention is given to the spiritual well-being of the caregiver, to qualities of healthy and unhealthy spirituality, methods of spiritual assessment, dealing with religious problems in care and counseling, and personal and community forms of spiritual life.

SELF-DEVELOPMENT AND SELF-CARE

Self-Development and Self-Care

Instructor: Dr. Kameelah Mu’min Rashad

Self-care is for chaplains and other caregivers may be one of the most neglected parts of the job. If chaplains don’t care for themselves, they will be unable to perform their duties. This course provides an opportunity to explore and cultivate practices for self-assessment, self-renewal and development, and self-care.

FACILITATING LIFE CYCLE RITUALS

Facilitating Life Cycle Rituals

Instructor: Fouad Elgohari

In this practicum course, students learn the requirements and procedures for various Islamic religious rituals, including birth/aqiqah, conversion, prayer, special supplications, funerary prayer, preparation of the deceased and burial, marriage ceremony, etc. Students will also gain insight and develop resources for facilitating such rituals for non-Muslims who come under their care.

Islamic Chaplaincy (Concentration Elective Courses)

CHAPLAINCY IN CONTEXTS

Chaplaincy in Contexts

Instructor: Dr. Ingrid Mattson

A further exploration of the theories, practices, and major issues of chaplaincy as a specialized form of spiritual care. The course surveys the requirements and preparations for work in hospital, hospice, university, prison, and military chaplaincies, and case studies explore how pastoral care might vary in each context. The arts and challenges of interreligious and intercultural care in different settings are addressed.

MARRIAGE, FAMILY AND ETHICS OF GENDER AMONG MUSLIM AMERICANS

Marriage, Family and Ethics of Gender among Muslim Americans

Instructor: Dr. Metra Azar-Salem

Students will engage in a thorough examination of gender identity, roles, marriage, and family matters that American Muslims face today, in light of Islamic ethical concepts. Close study of “lived experiences,” with emphasis on pluralistic culture and political contexts, will frame our conversations around current challenges faced by men and women in the areas of agency, spirituality, division of labor, community and family leadership, matrimony, divorce, and child rearing.

ISLAM, MEDICAL ETHICS & SPIRITUAL CARE

Islam, Medical Ethics & Spiritual Care

Instructor: Dr. Aasim Padela, Dr. Faisal Qazi

This course examines the contributions of Islam to the medical field, the spiritual care needs of Muslims in healthcare environments, and the issues raised by medical ethics for religious communities in general and for the Muslim community in particular. The first third of the class will focus on a framework for discussion on Islamic ethics and Bioethics, including Law, legal philosophy, and the context of the social and political setting for its applications. The second third of the course will explore the emerging field of Islamic Bioethics. The last third will focus on cultural competency issues in offering spiritual care for a Muslim patient and family.

COUNSELING MUSLIMS

Counseling Muslims

Instructor: Dr. Hamada Altalib

This course familiarizes students with the basic concepts of mental health to facilitate their collaboration with multidisciplinary teams (including both primary health and mental health professionals) serving the emotional health needs of Muslim communities. The course aims to: (1) provide students with a general awareness of the cultural factors particular to Muslim communities they will serve (2) provide students with the basic counseling skills to work with Muslims with emotional distress and (3) teach students to recognize and refer Muslims with serious mental illness.

COUNSELING MUSLIM YOUTH

Counseling Muslim Youth

Instructor: Dr. Omar Mahmood

This course introduces students to child and adolescent psychological evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment issues. The course provides instruction in conducting diagnostic interviews and basic therapeutic techniques as well as general approaches to the treatment of children and adolescents.

Care and Counseling for Bereavement

Care and Counseling for Bereavement

Instructor: Najah Bazzy

Study of the dynamics of grief and mourning and of appropriate spiritual care and counseling with the bereaved in the context of religious communities, chaplaincy, and spiritually integrative counseling.

RELIGIOUS CARE FOR COMMUNITIES IN CRISIS

Religious Care for Communities in Crisis

Instructor: Imam Khalid Latif

In critical incidents, whether due to human actions or natural phenomenon, injury, destruction, and/or death can occur. Chaplains may be called upon for pastoral care in such contexts of crisis intervention. This course explores how the practices of pastoral care can be applied within the framework of crisis intervention principles.

SUPPORTING THE SPIRITUAL CARE TEAM: INTERVENTIONS FOR THE CLINICAL ENVIRONMENT

Supporting the Spiritual Care Team: Interventions for the Clinical Environment

Instructor: Dr. Metra Azar-Salem

This course focuses on why chaplains, therapists and spiritual care providers should intentionally emphasize care for staff and themselves. We will look at how chaplains, therapists and spiritual care providers can create a calming and peaceful presence amidst what is often a chaotic and intense clinical environment. Modalities of self-care will be outlined and discussed. We will also look at some ways chaplains, therapist, and spiritual care providers can seek to provide rituals that will be meaningful to staff who are of different religions, and none. We will also then be looking at the need for providers to assess self-care. Topics such as compassion fatigue, burnout, vicarious trauma, and moral injury will all be defined and discussed as it relates to employees working in different settings. We will also then look at some specific programs and interventions that providers can use when working with staff - some tools in the therapists, chaplain and spiritual care provider’s belt.

Interfaith and Intra-Faith Studies

SUNNI-SHI’A RELATIONS AND INTRA-FAITH ISSUES

Sunni-Shi’a Relations and Intra-faith Issues

Instructor: Dr. Hamid Mavani, Dr. Kamran Aghaie

This course addresses the emergence of sectarian divisions amongst Muslims in the classical period, and the subsequent development of doctrinal and legal materials sustaining these identities. Historical examples of coexistence and conflict will be analyzed, and more recent efforts to promote intra-faith respect and cooperation will be evaluated.

ABRAHAMIC FAITHS IN CONVERSATION

Abrahamic Faiths in Conversation

Instructor: Dr. Reinhard Krauss

This course introduces students from a variety of academic, cultural, and religious backgrounds to an analysis of the complex interrelatedness of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. These faiths are treated as living traditions whose historical origins, current interactions, and future development are major factors which will continue to shape the spiritual, cultural, political and economic aspects of human civilization. The course features exploration, analysis, and critical examination of how the Abraham narrative originated, developed throughout history in various religious, cultural, and political contexts, and continues to exert a powerful influence on the self-understanding and the actions of half of the world’s population.

MUSLIM SPIRITUALITY AMONG THE RELIGIONS OF THE WORLD

Muslim Spirituality Among the Religions of the World

Instructor: Dr. Ozgur Koca

This course situates the diverse religious experiences and spiritual expressions of Islam within a global context. All students gain appreciation for the approaches to enrichment and growth cultivated by Muslims in different socio- political and cultural environments. Muslim students acquire tools for understanding other faiths’ search for meaning and enlightenment.

RACE, CULTURE AND IDENTITY AMONG MUSLIM-AMERICANS

Race, Culture and Identity Among Muslim-Americans

Instructor: Dr. Zareena Grewal

This cultural competencies course is designed to enable students to engage in theological reflection on vocation, utilizing resources from critical multiculturalism applied to Muslim American identity and issues of race and culture. Topics include narratives of immigration, indigeneity, and conversion; the framing of Islam as an American religion and its connection to “the Muslim world”; trends in Muslim American institution building, cultural production and critique, and generational shifts in Muslim social justice and anti-racism activism.

OUR INTERFAITH HERITAGE: LESSONS FROM MEDIEVAL SPAIN

Our Interfaith Heritage: Lessons from Medieval Spain

Instructor: Munir Shaikh

Medieval Spain is often cited as a shining example of centuries of interfaith harmony, or convivencia, between Muslims, Christians and Jews, whereas the reality was complex. In this course, we will learn about key periods of Iberian political and social history from the 7th and 16th centuries, and examine the positive interactions as well as the sources of tension and violence among the three faiths. We will consider how shifting theological and racial views of the time reshaped relationships and policies, setting the stage for each community's distinct historical narrative about the era. We will also evaluate and discuss modern scholarly historiography regarding interfaith relations in medieval Spain, and how this literature informs or departs from popular understandings.

Arabic

INTERMEDIATE ARABIC 2A AND ARABIC 2B

Intermediate Arabic 2A and Arabic 2B

Instructor: Dr. Mahbuba Hammad

Students further develop their reading, speaking, listening, and writing skills, and vocabulary. They master more complex grammar and syntax involving words derived from Arabic root patterns, using them to produce extended sentences and passages. They also master conjunctions and additional verb tenses.

ADVANCED ARABIC 3A AND ARABIC 3B

Advanced Arabic 3A and Arabic 3B

Instructor: Dr. Rabia Bajwa, Elijah Reynolds

Students build further proficiency in reading, speaking, listening, and writing skills, with an emphasis on comprehension of long passages from classical and contemporary texts. They communicate primarily in the target language, applying extensive vocabulary, grammatical constructions, idiomatic expressions, and common phrases. They recognize and use complex verb tenses.