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The study of Islamic philosophical theology in the English-speaking world has been largely carried out in Islamic Studies departments where the focus is mainly historical. Not only that, due to the compartmentalised nature of teaching and engagement in the modern university, a number of methodological limitations have severely restricted a full and comprehensive understanding of Islamic philosophical theology. As a result, research in this key area is not reflective of the systematic nature of the Islamic rational sciences.
This project proposes to offer the first fully engaged systematic articulation of the Islamic intellectual tradition, resulting in a clear methodological apparatus and conceptual lens through which to engage contemporary questions in key areas of science and philosophy.
Thus envisaged, to facilitate the retrieval of this methodological apparatus, the project will focus on the following areas which have formed the bedrock and conceptual foundation of Muslim intellectual thought: Logic, Epistemology, and Metaphysics. The task of retrieving this methodology will take the work of the 18th-century polymath Ismail Gelenbevi - a famed logician, philosophical theological, and mathematician as an entry-point to the rich Islamic philosophical corpus.
The fact that this project enjoys support from one of the best university departments in the west (Cambridge) as well as scholars with cross-training in both the western philosophical tradition and the traditional Islamic sciences (Yasser Qureshy, Hamza Bakri, Sait Ozervali) as well as the backing of a major religious endowment in Istanbul (ISVA Vakfi) speaks of a project that aims to contribute to the future trajectory of philosophical theology through a validly autochthonous lens, one which allows the tradition to speak as a robust and sophisticated system able to contribute to discussion around the Big Questions.