A Fresh Look at Islam in a Multi-Faith World: a philosophy for success through education

A Fresh Look at Islam in a Multi-Faith World: a philosophy for success through education

by Matthew L.N. Wilkinson


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A Fresh Look at Islam in a Multi-Faith World provides a comprehensively theorised and practical approach to thinking systematically and deeply about Islam and Muslims in a multi-faith world. It makes the case for a contemporary educational philosophy to help young Muslims surmount the challenges of post-modernity and to transcend the hiatuses and obstacles that they face in their interaction and relationships with non-Muslims and visa-versa.

It argues that the philosophy of critical realism in its original, dialectical and metaReal moments so fittingly ‘underlabours’ (Bhaskar, 1975) for the contemporary interpretation, clarification and conceptual deepening of Islamic doctrine, practice and education as to suggest a distinctive branch of critical realist philosophy, specifically suited for this purpose. This approach is called Islamic Critical Realism.

The book proceeds to explain how this Islamic Critical Realist approach can serve the interpretation of the consensual elements of Islamic doctrine, such as the six elements of Islamic belief and the five ‘pillars’ of Islamic practice, so that these essential features of the Muslim way of life can help Muslim young people to contribute positively to life in multi-faith liberal democracies in a globalising world.

Finally, the book shows how this Islamic Critical Realist approach can be brought to bear in humanities classrooms by history, religious education and citizenship teachers to help Muslim young people engage informatively and transformatively with themselves and others in multi-faith contexts.

A Fresh Look at Islam in a Multi-Faith World has been awarded the 2015 Cheryl Frank Memorial Prize

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781138898813
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 06/08/2015
Series: New Studies in Critical Realism and Education (Routledge Critical Realism) Series
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.25(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Dr Matthew L.N. Wilkinson is a Research Fellow at Cambridge Muslim College, Affiliate Lecturer at the Woolf Institute, Cambridge and Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Education, University of London.

The book is borne out of the author, Matthew Wilkinson’s, 23 years of humanities teaching of young Muslims and practice and research-based experience of Islam. Matthew embraced Islam in 1991 after reading theology at the University of Cambridge, where his Part 1 exam was recognised by a scholarship. After gaining a traditional Islamic education and British teaching qualifications (QTS secondary history), Matthew taught history, religious studies and citizenship in mainstream and Islamic faith schools for 15 years. Thereafter he gained a PhD on an ESRC studentship at King’s College London on the relationship between history curriculum and British Muslim boys. More recently, Matthew has lectured in history and religious education at the University of Cambridge. He has also acted as an expert witness in Islamic theology and Muslim identity.

Table of Contents

Part 1 Introduction: A Tale of Two Young Muslims, a Spiritual Quest, a Book to Be Used 1. From Sacred Civilisation to Secular Confusion: Why Does Islam Need a Philosophy? Part 2 2. Shared Meta-theoretical Premises: ‘Underlabouring’ and ‘Seriousness’. 3. Original Islamic Critical Realism 4. Dialectical Islamic Critical Realism: The life of the Prophet Muhammad 5. Islamic metaReality: the Articles of Faith and Pillars of Islam Part 3 6. Towards an Ontology of Educational Success: Muslim Young People in Humanities Education 7. History Education: from Absence to Emancipation 8. Religious Education: Learning about, from and for Religion-for-Life 9. Citizenship Education: a Pathway to Full Critical Engagement 10. Conclusion: A Call for Existential Seriousness to Re-generate the Happy Muslim Consciousness

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