Liminality: Living on Borders

Patrick Ryan

in Christian Lives Given to the Study of Islam

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780823243198
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823243235 | DOI:
Liminality: Living on Borders

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“Every night my mind drifts back to West Africa” – the testimony of Ryan, the American Jesuit, whose life was lived “on the borders” between Nigeria, Ghana, The Gambia, and the USA, especially his native New York. The Yoruba people, half Muslim – half Christian, formed the focus of doctoral studies at Harvard under the influence of Wilfred Cantwell Smith and Annemarie Schimmel. The chapter details a life spent shuttling between assignments and experiences in the two regions and it is marked with an array of influential friends who inspire and support; within the discipline: Humphrey Fisher, Lamin Sanneh and John Alden Williams. The traveller rests at Fordham with a new venture in Jewish-Christian-Muslim dialogue.

Keywords: Ryan; Jesuit; Nigeria; Ghana; Yoruba; Cantwell Smith; Annemarie Schimmel; Fordham; Jewish-Christian-Muslim

Chapter.  6114 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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