The 2011 CIR Organizing Committee:
The Critical Islamic Reflections Conference at Yale is put together by a diverse group of individuals from diverse backgrounds, educations, and experiences. This year's organizing committee includes, but is not limited to:
- Conference Chair: Rahim Sayani - YC '12
- Academic Chair: Munjed Murad - FES '12
- Administrative Advisor: Omer Bajwa - Yale Coordinator of Muslim Life
- Faculty Advisor: Mary Evelyn Tucker - FES & DS Faculty
- Faculty Advisor: John Grim - FES & DS Faculty
- Publicity/ Web Design: Yusuf Chauhan - YC '12
- Academic Committee: Salah Ahmed - YC '11
- Academic Committee: Umar Qadri - YC '11
- Academic Committee: Usama Qadri - YC '11
- Academic Committee: Sana Samnani - YC '12
DS- Yale Divinity School
FES- Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
YC- Yale College
Yale University's Critical Islamic Reflections group consists of a cross-section of graduate and undergraduate students organized to pursue critical academic scholarship on topics regarding Islam and Muslim society.
The CIR group has successfully run nine conferences until now (links to previous websites provided on the right). Past programs have featured leading and emerging scholars in the American Islamic context, many of whom possess backgrounds in both traditional Islamic learning and Anglo-American academia.
The conference is designed to provide a broad framework to continually pursue a sophisticated understanding and discourse of issues pertinent to Muslims in America in light of prevailing realities. While focusing discussion around specific themes each year, we aim to examine problems against a backdrop of broader, more fundamental questions confronting Islam and other religions. Those considerations include the following:
- What is the relationship between religious conviction and academic inquiry?
- What is an effective and legitimate articulation of the compatibility of faith and academia?
- What is the nature of the Islamic intellectual and scientific tradition - its scope, intellectual rigor, and comparison with contemporary Western academic methods?
- What is the relationship between "intellectual Islam" and the wider Muslim community?
- Assuming there is access, how can access to academic/ intellectual Islam empower or fail to serve this majority?