Frances G. Harpst Center for Catholic Thought and Culture

Drop Shadow

Interfaith Dialogue and Understanding Program

Qamar-ul Huda, Ph.D.

"Crescent and Dove: Civil Unrest and Nonviolence in the Middle East Uprisings"

Qamar-ul Huda

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

12:05 - 1:30 p.m.

Salomon Lecture Hall, Maher Hall

Free and open to the public

Co-sponsored by the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice and the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies.

The popular uprisings in North African and Middle Eastern countries have been attributed to socio-economic grievances, the lack of development, ineffective and corrupt rule of law institutions, very little political participation, and a burgeoning youth population with little employment opportunities. But how has religious civil society actors and organizations contributed to the nonviolent uprisings in Egypt, Yemen, Tunisia, Syria and in neighboring countries? How has culture, tradition, and particular interpretations of Islam impacted the way civil society members demand a peaceful change to their nations? How are Islamic values of justice, freedom, and confrontation of aggression being utilized to call for the removal of authoritarian regimes? This talk highlighted various aspects of nonviolence Islamic thought and practice as effective conflict resolution practices in the Middle East.

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Qamar-ul Huda, PhD, is the scholar of Islam and senior program officer in the Religion and Peacemaking Program at the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C. Dr. Huda is an adjunct associate professor at Georgetown University's Conflict Resolution Program where he teaches religion, ethnicity, identity and conflict resolution to graduate students. He taught Islamic studies and comparative religion at Boston College, College of the Holy Cross and Brandeis University. Dr. Huda’s area of interest is Islamic intellectual history, ethics, comparative religion, the language of violence, conflict resolution and non-violence in contemporary Islam. His edited book, The Crescent and Dove: Peace and Conflict Resolution in Islam (USIP Press, 2010), provides a critical analysis of models of nonviolent strategies, peace building efforts, and conflict resolution methods in Muslim communities. His current research is on Christian-Muslim relationships in conflict zones, and on comparative Sunni-Shi’ite interpretations of social justice, ethics, and post-conflict reconciliation. Huda has examined the production of religious knowledge, the diversity of religious practices and religious thought, and peacemaking in Islam. His earlier book, Striving for Divine Union: Spiritual Exercises for Suhrawardi Sufis (Routledge) examined the theological, political, and social dimensions of the celebrated Suhrawardi Sufis from Iraq to South Asia. He served as the guest editor to The Journal of Peacebuilding and Development for the special issue on "Islam and Peacebuilding." He served as the guest editor to The Muslim World Journal for the special issue on “Qawwali: Politics, Poetry and Performance.” He has published articles on comparative ethics, inter-faith dialogue, religious peace building, rituals, and mysticism in several journals. He earned his doctorate from UCLA in Islamic intellectual history, earned his BA from Colgate University, and studied in Islamic seminaries overseas.