Conference Overview

From April 19 to April 21, 2009, the University of Notre Dame will host “The Quran in Its Historical Context,” a major international conference addressing the most recent theories, controversies, and discoveries in the field of Quranic Studies. Like the first Notre Dame Quran conference (2005; see the conference book here), “The Quran in Its Historical Context" will be a unique forum for a discussion of the historical circumstances in which the Quran was formed, and of its relationship to earlier literature, notably the Bible.

Lectures and Topics

The conference will feature a general opening lecture by Prof. Nasr Hamid Abu Zayd of Leiden University (Holland), with a response by Prof. Abdolkarim Soroush, and a second general lecture by Prof. Robert Hoyland of the University of St. Andrews (Scotland). The conference panels will be divided into the following topics:

  1. Quranic Origins: Manuscript Evidence
  2. Quranic Origins: Historical Evidence
  3. The Quran and Earlier Religious Tradition
  4. The Quran as Literature
  5. The Quran and Historical Linguistics

Leading scholars from a wide range of countries—including Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Germany, and the United Kingdom—will lead the panel discussions. The public is welcome at all conference events and no fee or registration is required. Please contact the conference director, Gabriel Said Reynolds, with any questions.

Video of Abū Zayd/Soroush lecture

Video of Hoyland lecture

Mac users will need to download Flip4Mac to play videos.

Conference Photos

Sponsored by:
The Henkels Lecture Series of the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts
The College of Arts and Letters
The Graduate School
The Medieval Institute
The Kellogg Institute