On Thursday, 5 May 2011, AKU-ISMC was pleased to host a public lecture by Professor Stefan Wild. Entitled “Self-Referentiality in the Qur’an”, the talk examined the self-referential nature of the Qur’an and compared it to scriptures of other monotheistic religions, suggesting the Qur’an’s reflexive nature to be one of its unique features. The Professor also highlighted the relationship between this feature and the canonisation of the Qur’anic text.
This talk fitted well into the overall theme of this year’s Research Lecture Series, whose focus is the construction of knowledge about Muslim cultures and societies - one of the two main research themes of the Institute. The public lecture was able to attract a large audience, being broadcast live via the internet.
AKU-ISMC has been honoured to host Professor Wild during April and May 2011 as a visiting lecturer. While at the Institute he has offered a number of lectures to students of the MA Programme on a wide variety of topics, including: The Noble Qur’an and the Orientalists; Modern Arabic Literature and Islam; and Taha Husayn (1889-1973) and Arab Modernity. Professor Wild also conducted a seminar for AKU-ISMC faculty entitled Were the Umayyads Arab Nationalists?
Professor Stefan Wild is one of the most prominent scholars in his field. From 1968 to 1973 he was Director of the German Oriental Institute in Beirut, Lebanon and has since been Professor at the University of Amsterdam and Professor for Semitic Languages and Islamic Studies at the University of Bonn, where he is currently Professor Emeritus. He has written a study of Lebanese Place-Names, has worked on Classical Arabic lexicography and Classical and Modern Arabic Literature including Palestinian literature, and has edited two volumes on the Qur'anic text. He is co-editor of Die Welt des Islams. International Journal for the Study of Modern Islam (Leiden).
Coordinator, Planning & Academic Development
Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations