ML 410 – Islam and Modernity



The course would examine both themes and individuals. It explores the phenomenon of modernity in its different guises, various intellectual reactions to its advance in Muslim societies, and main currents of thought that have emerged in the Muslim world as the result of encounter between Islam and modernity. The views of influential Muslim thinkers, who have tried to respond to the challenges of modernity will be critically examined.
This first part of the module seeks to introduce students to the Modernity, providing an overview of the topic and examine the following core issues:
 What is this thing called modernity: historical and philosophical roots
 Modernity, Modernism, Modernisation
 Later Modernity, Post-Modernity, Anti-Modernity
 Secularisation
 Tradition-vs. Modernity
 Anti-Rational Modernity and Anti-Modern
 Muslim Responses to Modernity (Pragmatic & Ideological Responses)
 Muslim Responses to Modernity (Rational and Post-modern Responses)
The second part of the module aims at focusing on specific modern ethical issues, each session will address the contemporary issues of special importance from an Islamic viewpoint. Students are expected to join the discussion sessions on agreed themes. The topics covered in the second part of the module include:
 Family Planning
 Abortion
 Genetic Screening
 Artificial Insemination
 Crises of Modernity towards a New Theory of law
 Surrogacy and Cloning
 Organ Transplantation
 Brain Death and Euthanasia
 Women under Islamic Law

Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategy

All learning materials are developed according to the SCATE format. Students are advised to study units available online followed by timetabled activities which are of crucial importance and require a serious attention. Students need to consult suggested reading materials which are not necessarily available online. At the same time, students are expected to contribute to Discussion Group as an integral part of their study. They would receive feedback regarding their activities and contribution by the module tutor. Extra reading and activities are provided for students who are interested to have a deeper and broader understanding of the issues of concern.
Formative Assessment:
Formative assessment for this module will consist of written feedback from the lecturer, questioning and discussion through the online forums. One draft of the students’ final essay (coursework) may be handed in to the lecturer at the 12th learning week for formative assessment, in which the lecturer will give the student feedback on how to improve their research and quality of writing.
Summative Assessment:
Students are required to submit 2 out of 5 Review Questions (RQ) and 2 out of 5 Activities (Act) as the weekly assignments for each module during the semester. All of these assignments as well as students’ final essays at the end of the semester will be commented and marked by tutors. Students can see those comments and marks in their drop box which are available in their D2L accounts. Finally, students are required to submit an Individual coursework -final essay (4000 words) on a relevant topic approved in advance by the module tutor.

Assessment Weighting
Activities: 30%
Review Questions & Discussion Group: 10%
Final Essay (Coursework): 60%
Students should get at least a pass mark for all three above components.

Learning materials

Core readings
Chittick, W. (2007) Science of the Cosmos, Science of the Soul. London: Oneworld
Cooper, J (2000) Islam and Modernity: Muslim Intellectuals Respond. IB Tauris
Esposito, J. & Voll, J. (2001) The Makers of Contemporary Islam. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Kurzman, C. (1998) Liberal Islam: A sourcebook. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Masud K. M (2009). Islam and Modernity: Key Issues and Debates, Edinburgh University Press
Moaddel, M. &Talattuf, K. (ed.) (2006) Contemporary Debates in Islam: An Anthology of Modernist and Fundamentalist Thought. US: St Martin’s Press.
Mc Donough, S. (1984) Muslim Ethics and Modernity: A Comparative Study of the Ethical Thought, Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press
Rahman, F. (1984) Islam and Modernity: Transformation of an Intellectual Tradition. University of Chicago Press
Roy, Olivier. (2004) Globalised Islam: the search for a new Umma. London: Hurst & Company