Chapter

Islam and Modernity

Fazlur Rahman

in Liberal Islam

Published in print October 1998 | ISBN: 9780195116212
Published online November 2007 |
  Islam and Modernity

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Fazlur Rahman (PakistanUnited States, 19191988) was born and raised in the British colonies that would later become Pakistan. He embarked on an academic career that took him to graduate degrees at Punjab University and Oxford and teaching positions in Islamic philosophy in England and Canada. He returned to Pakistan in 1961 to lead the Central Institute of Islamic Research in Karachi, a state-sponsored organization that Rahman mobilized to battle religious traditionalists and radicals. Rahman's modernist views were controversial: his detractors referred to him as the destroyer of hadiths [traditions of the Prophet] because of his insistence on judging the weight of hadith reports in light of the overall spirit of the Qur'an. 1 Rahman returned to academia in 1968 as a professor at the University of Chicago, where he continued to argue for a modern reinterpretation of Islam. 2 A measure of this leading thinker's impact, a colleague wrote after Rahman's death in 1988, is that wherever I have traveled in the world . . . I have never met a Muslim scholar or other specialist on Islam who has not heard of Fazlur Rahman or who is neutral about his contributions. 3

Chapter.  11824 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture ; Islam

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