Graduate Theological Union
Courses in Islamic Studies
In cooperation with several GTU member schools, the Center for Islamic Studies offers introductory and advanced courses in Islamic history, theology, philosophy, culture, arts, and religious practice. It is affiliated with departments at the University of California, Berkeley that intersect with the study of Islam -- such as African Diaspora Studies, Anthropology, Ethnic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, South and Southeast Asian Studies, and the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. The following list consists of courses within the GTU consortium and at UC Berkeley.
Course Number: HRST-2083
Instructor: Farina (DSPT)
Location and Time: DSPT: 1, M 07:10PM-09:40PM
Description: This seminar course explores important elements and critical issues about interreligious dialogue. The study will include an examination of theories of dialogue and the history of Christian-Muslim dialogue. The course includes site visits, attending events in Christian and Muslim communities, short papers, book reviews and a final project or research paper. Intended audience: MDiv, MA, MTS, PhD. [20 max enrollment; PIN code required]
Introduction to Islam
Course Number: HR-1902
Instructor: Siddiqi (GTU/CIS)
Location and Time: CDSP: B, T 11:10AM-02:00PM
Description: This course provides an introduction to Islam as a religious system focusing on its origins, foundational sources, history, culture, values, and its impact on Muslims, non-Muslims and the world.
Course Number: Near Eastern Studies 146A (UCB Course Control Number 61540)
Location and Time: 126 Barrows, T/Th 02:00PM-3:30PM
Description: A comprehensive and detailed introduction to the sources, doctrines, practices, and institutions of Islam, together with their historical development and elaboration in a select number of ethnic and geographic environments and an overview of Islam in the world today.
Islam and Society in Southeast Asia
Course Number: Southeast Asian 137 (UCB Course Control Number 84115)
Instructor: Hadler (UCB)
Location and Time: 215 Dwinelle, T/Th 11:00AM-12:30PM
Description: This undergraduate seminar will be an investigation into key discourses on Islam in Southeast Asia, focusing on history, literature, and culture. We will trace the processes through which Islam entered the Malay world in the 13th century, and explore the European colonial encounters with Islam in Southeast Asia and the ways that Islam interacted with and resisted colonialism. We will discuss the role of mysticism and of reformists and will also explore the struggles of Islam as a minority religion in the Philippines and Thailand. Readings will include primary sources in translation, literary texts, ethnographic works, and writings by colonial and local scholars.
Islam in South Asia
Course Number: South Asian 144 (UCB Course Control Number 84027)
Instructor: Faruqui (UCB)
Location and Time: 182 Dwinelle, T/Th 12:30PM-02:00PM
Description: The aim of this course on the culture and history of Muslim communities and institutions in South Asia is to introduce students to the broad historical currents of the expansion of Islam in the Indian subcontinent, the nature of Muslim political authority, the interaction between religious communities, Islamic aesthetics and contributions to material culture, the varied engagements and reactions of Muslims to colonial rule, and the contemporary concerns of South Asia's Muslims. While this is a lecture course, ample time will be set aside for discussion and the active engagement of participants will be expected. Lectures will be supplemented with visual material, music, and movies where possible.
Islamic Religious and Philosophical Texts in Arabic
Course Number: Arabic 108 (UCB Course Control Number 62036)
Instructor: Hayes (UCB)
Location and Time: 252 Barrows, M/W 03:00PM-04:30PM
Description: Readings in the basic texts of Islam (Qur'an, Huran, Hadith, Sira, commentary) and in theological, mystical, and philosophical texts.
Muslims in America
Course Number: Asian American Studies 128AC (UCB Course Control Number 05445)
Instructor: Bazian (UCB)
Location and Time: 145 Dwinelle, M/W 04:00PM-05:30PM
Description: The course traces Islam's journey in America. It will deal with the emergence of identifiable Muslim communities throughout the U.S. and focus on patterns of migration, the ethnic makeup of such communities, gender dynamics, political identity, and cases of conversion to Islam. The course will spend considerable time on the African American, Indo-Pakistani, and Arab American Muslim communities since they constitute the largest groupings. It also examines in depth the emergence of national, regional, and local Muslim institutions, patterns of development pursued by a number of them, and levels of cooperation or antagonism. The course seeks an examination of gender relations and dynamics across the various Muslim groupings, and the internal and external factors that contribute to real and imagined crisis. The course seeks to conduct and document the growth and expansion of mosques, schools, and community centers in the greater Bay Area. Finally, no class on Islam in America would be complete without a critical examination of the impacts of 9/11 on Muslim communities, the erosion of civil rights, and the ongoing war on terrorism.
Quranic Studies II
Course Number: HRBS-4828
Instructor: Anwar (SKSM)
Location and Time: SKSM, W 02:10PM-05:00PM
Description: Quranic Studies II: Major Themes. In this course, in conjunction with scholarship on the major themes and narrative of the Quran, the students will also be reading the text of the Quran directly (through translations) and enacting some of the narratives for an embodied understanding of the texts. Gender analysis will be one of the ways that the Quranic stories will be read. The critical methods applied to the study of the narratives will include gender analysis. The course will taught within an Islamic context simulated through the sound of the Azhan (call to prayer) and exposure to Islamic art. PhD students will be required to write a 5,000 word research paper on a topic chosen by individual students and approved by the instructor. [15 max enrollment; PIN code required; Auditors excluded].
Rumi & deVitray-Meyerovitch
Course Number: HR-4811
Instructor: Farajajé (SKSM), Lipowitz (GTU)
Location and Time: SKSM, M 09:40AM-12:30PM
Description: This course will examine the Sufi poet Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi's greatest text, the Masnavi. The Masnavi's key themes and ideas, including love and the spiritual evolution of the human being, the role of the Saykh or spiritual teacher, and the struggle to control (or "tame") the unruly lower self, the nafs, will be explored. Another aspect of the course will focus on the work of the French scholar Eva deVitray-Meyerovitch, who dedicated her life to the study of Rumi and Mevlevi culture. Using counter-oppressive and multireligious perspectives, this course will study Mevlana by moving beyond colonialist Orientalist constructions of "Sufism." Some reading knowledge of French would be helpful, but is not required for this course. Seminar; reflection papers and a 15-20 page research paper. Intended audience: MA, MDiv, PhD/ThD. This course is co-taught by PhD student Cassie Lipowitz with a Newhall Award, and Dr. Ibrahim Farajajé.
Themes in the Anthropology of the Middle East and Islam
Course Number: Anthropology 181 (UCB Course Control Number 02678)
Instructor: Pandolfo (UCB)
Location and Time: 9 Lewis, T/Th 03:30PM-05:00PM
Description: Cultures of the contemporary Near East, with special emphasis upon Arab populations.
Topics in Islamic Art
Course Number: History of Art C121A (UCB Course Control Number 05211)
Instructor: Mostafa (UCB)
Location and Time: 106 Moffitt, T/Th 02:00PM-03:30PM
Description: The course will treat in depth topics in Islamic architecture and topics in Islamic art. Subjects addressed may include painting, calligraphy, and book production. Also listed as Near Eastern Studies C121A.
Topics in Islamic Studies
Course Number: HRRS-5785
Instructor: Jiwa (GTU/CIS)
Location and Time: TBA
Description: Theories and Methods in Contemporary Islamic Studies. This is an advanced seminar in which we will discuss research methods, approaches and themes in the study of Islam and Muslims in contemporary contexts. Topics covered include: conceptual frameworks in the study of Islam; public Islam in secular contexts; modernity and power; Muslim majorities and minorities/identity; and Islamophobia. Case-studies in the global media representation of Islam will serve to expand theoretical concepts and students will have an opportunity to apply some of these theories and methods to their own research projects.