Notes on contributors

Umai F. Abd-Allah received his PhD in Arabic and Islamic Studies from the University of Chicago in 1978 with a dissertation on the origins of Islamic law. His principal interests are Islamic intellectual and spiritual history, the history of Islam in the West, and comparative religion. He taught academically in the United States, Canada and Saudi Arabia for more than twenty years before taking up his present post as chairperson and scholar-in-residence of the Nawawi Foundation (Chicago), an educational organisation devoted to exploring Islamic intellectual, spiritual and cultural legacies and making them relevant today. His most recent book, A Muslim in Victorian America: The Life of Alexander Russell Webb, appeared in 2006.

M. A. S. Abdel Haleem was educated at al-Azhar, Cairo, and Cambridge Universities, and has taught Arabic at the universities of Cambridge and London since 1966. He is now Professor of Islamic Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Among his recent publications are

Understanding the Qur'an: Themes and Style (2001), English Translations of the Qur'an: The Making of an Image (2004), and a new translation of The Qur'an (2004).

Nader El-Bizii is a Research Associate in Philosophy at The Institute of Ismaili Studies, London, and an Affiliated Lecturer at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge. He is also a Visiting Professor at Lincoln University, and acts as a Chercheur Associe at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS, Paris). He previously taught at the universities of Nottingham and Harvard and the American University of Beirut. In addition, he is an elected member of the Steering Committee of the Societe Internationale d'Histoire des Sciences et des Philosophies Arabes et Islamiques (CNRS, Paris). His areas of research are Arabic Sciences and Philosophy, Phenomenology, and Architectural Humanities.

Khalid Blankinship obtained his PhD in history in 1988, with a specialisation in Islam, from the University of Washington. Since 1990, he has worked as a professor in the Department of Religion at Temple University in Philadelphia. He has remained active in research and lecturing on religion in general and Islam in particular. His book, The End of the Jihad State: The Reign of Hisham ibn 'Abd al-Malik and the Collapse of the Umayyads was published in 1994;

he also translated two of the thirty-eight volumes of The History of al-Tabari for the Tabari Translation Project.

David B. Burrell CSC is Theodore M. Hesburgh Professor in Philosophy and Theology at the University of Notre Dame, USA. His publishing career began in 1973 with Analogy and Philosophical Language, and led to a series of studies of St Thomas Aquinas. Since 1982 he has worked mainly in comparative issues in philosophical theology in Judaism, Christianity and Islam. His more recent works include Freedom and Creation in Three Traditions (1993), and two translations of theological texts by al-Ghazall.

William C. Chittick is Professor of Religious Studies in the Department of Asian and Asian-American Studies, State University of New York, Stony Brook. He has published twenty-five books and numerous articles on Islamic intellectual history, including The Sufi Path of Love: The Spiritual Teachings of Rumi (1983), The Sufi Path of Knowledge: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination (1989), and The Heart of Islamic Philosophy (2001).

Ahmed El Shamsy is a doctoral candidate in History and Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University. He received his BA and MSc from the University of London, and has also studied Islamic theology and law in Germany and Egypt. His doctoral research investigates the early social and intellectual history of the Shafi'I school of law; in conjunction with this project, he is preparing a critical edition of a ninth-century work by al-Shaafi'ai's successor al-Buwaytai.

Paul-A. Hardy took his BA/MA from Oxford, and his PhD in Islamic Thought from the University of Chicago. He has lectured at the School of Oriental and African Studies in the University of London and at Hunter College, New York. He is the author of the forthcoming Avicenna on Self-Knowing.

Marcia Hermansen is Professor of Islamic Studies and Director of the Islamic World Studies Minor at Loyola University, Chicago. She published The Conclusive Argument from God: Shah Wall Allah of Delhi's Hujjat Allah al-Baligha (1996), and is co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World (2003).

Oliver Leaman has been Professor of Philosophy at the University of Kentucky, USA, since 2000. Before that he taught in the United Kingdom and Africa. He has written Islamic Aesthetics: An Introduction (2004). He edited The Qur'an: An Encyclopedia, and the Biographical Dictionary of Islamic Philosophers, both published in 2006. He has also written and edited several earlier publications on Islamic philosophy and the philosophy of religion.

Yahya Michot was from 1981 until 1997 Director of the Centre for Arabic Philosophy at the University of Louvain, before taking up his current post as Islamic Centre Lecturer in the Faculty of Theology, University of Oxford. His research interests include the theology of Ibn Taymiyya (d. 1328) and the life and philosophy of Avicenna (d. 1037). Among his recent publications are

Ibn Taymiyya: Un Dieu hesitant? (2004) and Muslims under Non-Muslim Rule (2006).

Toby Mayer is currently a Research Associate at the Institute of Ismaili Studies, London, where he works on the esoteric hermeneutics of the Qur'an by figures like Shahrastan! and Amull, as well as teaching courses on the Qur'an and Sufism. Until 2003 he held a lectureship at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, where he taught Islamic philosophy and mysticism. In addition to a number of articles on Islamic philosophy, he is the co-author, with Wilferd Madelung, of Struggling with the Philosopher: A New Arabic Edition and English Translation of Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Karim al-Shahrastani's Kitab al-Musara'a.

Sajjad Rizvi is Senior Lecturer in Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter. He specialises in Islamic intellectual history, in particular the thought of the Safavid period, and is the author of Mulla! Sadra Shirazi (2007) and with Feras Hamza of Understanding the Word of God (2008). Current projects include a study of time and creation in Islamic philosophy and Islamic intellectual history in India.

Ayman Shihadeh is Lecturer in Islamic Studies and Arabic at the University of Edinburgh. He specialises mainly in ethical theory in Islam and in the Middle Period of Islamic philosophy and theology, especially twelfth-century interaction between the kalam and philosophical traditions, criticism of Avicenna, and the thought of Fakhr al-Din al-Raz!. He is the author of The Teleological Ethics of Fakhr al-Din al-Raz! (2006).

Steffen A.J. Stelzer is Professor of Philosophy and Chair of the Department at the American University in Cairo. He obtained his PhD from the Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin, engaged in research at the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris and at Harvard, and has taught at Johns Hopkins University. His areas of specialisation include rationality and revelation, the conditions and constituents of philosophical discourse, concepts of the transmission of knowledge, and comparative analyses of Western philosophical and Islamic models.

Hossein Ziai is Professor of Islamic and Iranian Studies at UCLA. He has published many articles and several books on the Arabic and Persian Illuminationist system of philosophy. He has published several text-editions and translations of Arabic and Persian Illuminationist texts, including Suhrawardl's Philosophy of Illumination, Shahrazuri's Commentary on the Philosophy of Illumination, and Ibn Kammma's Commentary on Suhrawardl's Intimations.

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