Hartford Seminary

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Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 - hARTsem DAYS: Celebrate the Arts and Spirituality at Hartford Seminary

Islam and Democracy

During the past four years, a team of scholars, researchers and religious leaders in Europe and the United States has organized meetings and gatherings with members of local Muslim communities. The objective of the project is to offer opinion-formers — particularly non-Muslims in churches, the media, universities and politics — a response from the Muslim grassroots living in the West, on the issue of the alleged ?clash of civilizations? between Islam and the West. In particular, the compatibility of democracy and Islam has been studied.

Emerging from the project are some innovative reflections on contemporary Islamic thought. The fire sparked by the revolts in the Arab world has touched the hearts of Western Muslims. They rely on the Arab spring not only to promote democracy in their countries but also to counter the idea that Muslim equals terrorist, prominent in the post 9/11 world. In this talk, Professor Tacchini will discuss the findings of the project, offering a window on Western Islam in the public square

Davide Tacchini, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Religious Studies at The Catholic University, Milan, Italy. He was a visiting scholar at Hartford Seminary from 2007 to 2009. His work focuses on modern and contemporary Islamic Studies as well as Christian – Muslim relations, particularly as they relate to Islam in the European context.

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