Leading Islamic studies academic on 'Islam and citizenship'

A leading Islamic studies academic is to speak on 'Islam and Citizenship' this week in the final prestigious Stevenson lecture in the current series.

Mona Siddiqui, professor of Islamic studies and public understanding at the University of Glasgow, will be addressing the major concepts of citizenship in Islam ヨ at 6pm on Thursday 7 December - and asking: does the notion of citizenship raise conflict between loyalty to the state and loyalty to ones faith?

Professor Siddiqui holds the distinction of being the first female Muslim chair in Islamic studies in Scotland and was recently asked to comment on Muslim identity for a press interview. She said: "To see yourself as someone for whom that faith can only be practised in a certain way, away from other communities, never wanting to address the big issues ヨ that's not what I want for Islam and that's not the way forward for Muslim societies."

The lecture, Professor Siddiqui says, will attempt to answer the following questions: "What concepts of citizenship emerge from Islamic sources and how are they being seen in contemporary times? With so much media coverage of Islam, how can Muslim communities respond both to the global challenges as well as looking at internal problems?

"The biggest challenge is understanding the very nature of civil society where religious voices are competing with other voices and religion and religious minorities are struggling to find a constructive, public platform. Perhaps a hadith from the Prophet could provide a conceptual framework of citizenship - `The best of you is he or she who is of most benefit to other'."

The Stevenson lecture starts at 6pm on Thursday 7 December in the Sir Charles Wilson Building, at the junction of Gibson Street and University Avenue.

A second series of five Stevenson lectures begins on 25 January next year with a lecture by Sir Bernard Crick on 'Identity politics: Multiculturalism, Britishness and Europe.'

The Stevenson lectures are free and open to all without ticket. Each lecture will be followed by questions and discussion and there will be an opportunity to informally meet the speakers at a reception after the lecture.

Martin Shannon (m.shannon@admin.gla.ac.uk)


Further information:

Professor Mona Siddiqui Tel: 0141 330 4604

M.Siddiqui@divinity.arts.gla.ac.uk

First published: 4 December 2006