The Chair of Islamic Doctrine cooperates with a number of internationally renowned partners in theological and interfaith research. Ranging from joint publications to scholarly discussion groups and various forms of engaging the public, these collaborations situate ChID at the forefront of the most recent developments in the research of global interfaith, especially Muslim-Christian, dialogue.
The Chair of Islamic Doctrine welcomes international scholars from the fields of Systematic Theology/Kalam and Interfaith Research. If you are interested in a cooperation, please contact our Chair Secretariat.
Funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation), the Chair of Islamic Doctrine is part of a newly established research group on ‘De/Sacralisation of Texts’. This highly interdisciplinary research group examines texts which have a special status and relevance, linked to specific social, cultural, and religious practices, such as the interpretation and application of these texts. Working with a broad variety of texts from the areas of religion, literature, law, and politics, the research group analyses processes of sacralisation and desacralisation. ChID contributes to the research group with its subproject ‘The Argument from Scripture (Dalīl al-Naql): Muslim Perceptions of the Bible in the Early Ottoman Period’. The project focuses on early texts in Ottoman Turkish, which articulate Muslim perceptions of the Bible. The subproject includes two PhD positions in its programme.
The St Andrews Encyclopaedia of Theology (SAET) is a nascent, free-to-access online encyclopedic resource for scholars of religion and theology everywhere. It embraces Jewish and Muslim theologies in addition to Christianity. It provides articles of top academic quality on theological concepts from all major religions. While most contributions to the study of theology today follow social-scientific approaches to religious practice, the material of the SAET is intentionally written by scholars for whom these traditions are alive, thereby providing an emic rather than etic perspective. In its full form, SAET will present not only the best of recent scholarship on traditional theological topics, but also allow for organic, interdisciplinary academic engagement and growth. Prof. Dr. Lejla Demiri, serves as SAET’s Senior Editor for Islam, contributing to the outline, selecting authors, and ensuring the high academic quality of contributions in Islam to this promising future standard daily reference tool.
A tool to explore writings by Muslims and Christians about and against each other, ‘Christian-Muslim Relations. A Bibliographical History’ provides an encylopaedic overview of sources on Christian-Muslim encounters in a shared history. With a focus on sources from the Near East, North Africa, and especially the Ottoman Empire, Prof. Dr. Demiri is a member of the editorial board of CMR1900, which covers the period from 1500 to 1900. This international and pioneering project recovers and maps the manifold history of relations between Muslims and Christians, thereby offering new ways of understanding today’s dimensions of mutual perceptions between Christians and Muslims.
For almost twenty years, The Building Bridges Seminar annualy brings together internationally recognised Muslim and Christian scholars for intensive study. First hosted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, and since 2012 under the stewardship of Georgetown University, the community of long-term committed scholars has grown. Each year, they gather, in a unique setting to discuss many of the most significant themes in the interface of Christianiy and Islam, such as monotheism, human nature, prayer, etc. Prof. Dr. Lejla Demiri has participated in a number of Building Bridges seminars and has become a part of this distinguished community of scholars, forging new grounds in interfaith conversations.
‘A Common Word Between Us and You’ of 2007 was the first modern document, in which 138 Muslim scholars of all branches of Islam unanimously declared common ground between Christianity and Islam, namely, the love of God and the love of the neighbour. It addresses churches and Christians everywhere and has become a landmark in Muslim-Christian relations, stimulating fruitful discussions and experiencing unprecedented global acceptance by hundreds of Muslim and Christian scholars, leaders, and intellectuals. On several occasions, Prof. Lejla Demiri has contributed to the dissemination of the document and to the research of its reception, for instance by publishing the books A Common Word: Text and Reflections: A Resource for Parishes and Mosques (2011, incl. later translations in Albanian, Russian and Spanish) and, with Yazid Said (eds.), The Future of Interfaith Dialogue: Muslim–Christian Encounters through A Common Word (2018).
In cooperation with Prof. Dr. Sohaira Siddiqui (Georgetown University Qatar), ChID pursued the one-year project ‘Exploring the Feminine within Islam’ (Jan-Dec 2019), funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). The project brought together female scholars from different countries of origin, discourse spaces and age groups and established an international network to work on theological concepts of ‘The Feminine within Islam’, The multiperspectivity also shaped the activities held within the framework of the 2019 project, which culminated in a round table with top international female researchers from various disciplines in Tübingen in December 2019. The activities over the year contributed to designing a network and formulating central questions for dealing with ‘The Feminine within Islam’ in a global perspective. For a detailed report, please click here.
For all religions, the musical dimension and especially the sounding of sacred texts is an essential component. In cooperation with the Institute of Musicology, Prof. Dr. Lejla Demiri and Dr. Mujadad Zaman developed and led the project ‘Sacred Sound’ (April 2017 to July 2018), which was part of the University’s ‘Exploration Starter Fund’ through its Excellence Initiative. This project pursued research questions related to ‘sacred sounds’ in an interreligious and interdisciplinary context. The events of the project explored what is common as well as distinct within the sacred conceptions of ‘sound’ in the traditions of Judaism, Christinity, and Islam. Further, by combining academic lectures with music in the form of a series of ‘lecture/recitals’, the project opened up new paths for the communication of academic research to the public.