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Islamic Political Thought, Approaches to History(393-0-28)


Henri Lauziere
Harris Hall - Room 333
Henri Lauziere is Associate Professor of History and Alumnae of Northwestern Teaching Professor. He specializes in modern Middle Eastern and North African history, with a particular emphasis on the history of Islamic thought.

Meeting Info

Online: Wed, 6:00PM - 9:00PM

Overview of class

Topic: Islamic Political Thought

This course focuses on the historical understanding of, and production of historical knowledge about, Islamic political thought and activism in the 20th century. The main objective of the course is to examine and question some of the conceptual building blocks with which scholars try to make sense of the messiness of history: Islamic modernism, Islamism, Wahhabism, Salafism and post-Islamism. What do these constructs mean, and to what extent are they valid or useful? What kinds of assumptions do they carry? How do they shape the way in which scholars produce historical narratives of the development of Islamic thought and activism in the modern era? The course is also designed to allow students to familiarize themselves with key Islamic movements and activists in 20th-century Egypt and Saudi Arabia, arguably the two most influential centers of Islamic thinking in the last hundred years.

Learning Objectives

By delving into these questions mentioned above, students will learn to read scholarly works more effectively, to identify how narratives produce judgments, and to appreciate the political, moral and methodological challenges of the historian's craft.

Evaluation Method

Four (4) response papers and two (2) short papers.

Class Materials (Required)

Selected readings will be available to students on Canvas.

Class Notes

History Area of Concentration: Africa/Middle East

Class Attributes

Historical Studies Distro Area
Synchronous:Class meets remotely at scheduled time