Newsletter — October 2018

Dear friends,

This month I would like to go into some technical detail about our library’s catalogue, because things are evolving very quickly. Since 2001, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP has developed, along with several developers, a cataloguing software system called AlKindi which is wholly designed for the classical Arab heritage. Since 2011, version 4 of this software has been completely redesigned to consider the IFLA LRM bibliographic model, which focuses on works, their cultural context, and editorial history.

For a long time, we had been looking to share this exceptional tool with other libraries. This is now possible due to funding granted by the European Union (project Adawāt). Since September, the Institute for Arab Manuscripts (IAM, Cairo, see the picture) has been cataloguing its manuscripts in the same database as our own. So, we are now taking our software and making a distinction between the integrated library management system (ILS), which we now call Diamond-ILS, and the portal dedicated to the classical Arabic heritage, which keeps the name AlKindi.

All this data is available online: the AlKindi general portal (IDEO and IAM), IDEO’s catalogue and the IAM’s catalogue.

We are currently in negotiations with other libraries who wish to use Diamond-ILS, and in particular to catalogue their Arabic manuscripts. Diamond-ILS is the only software that allows both printed works and manuscripts to be catalogued according to the IFLA LRM model.

Thank you all for your support in serving the classical Arab heritage and the dialogue of religions!

Seminars

On October 3rd, M. Aziz Hilal led a seminar on the topic “The Legacy of al-Fārābī (d. 339/950) in the Philosophical Thinking in al-Andalus”. The influence of al-Fārābī is clearly manifested in Ibn Bāǧǧa’s (d. 533/1139) political philosophy, particularly in his treatise Tadbīr al-mutawaḥḥid, in Averroes’ (d. 595/1198) commentary on Plato’s Republic, or in Ibn Ṭufayl’s (d. 581/1185) work Ḥayy b. Yaqzān. Click here to read the report…

On October 16th, Frédéric Abécassis, Director of Studies at the French Institute for Oriental Archaeology (IFAO) in Cairo, led a seminar on the topic “From the Liberal Education Market to an Egypt on the Move: A Return to a Path of Research”. Behind apparently separate research topics, he has always been interested in the question of the construction of human communities. Click here to read the report…

Lectures

On October 7th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a conference/debate in Paris proposed by Public Encouragement on the subject “The Question of the Separation between the Temporal and the Spiritual in the Muslim tradition: Challenges for French Secularism”.

On October 10th, Guillaume de Vaulx gave a lecture entitled “The Dawn of the Muslim State”, as part of the annual lecture series “Sorbonne Talking” at Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi.

On October 17th, Jean Druel, OP gave a lecture at the European Delegation on the role of al-Azhar in interfaith dialogue in Egypt.

From October 17th to 19th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP participated in the XXIst Annual Meeting of the European People’s Party’s (EPP) Intercultural Group Dialogue with Churches and Religious Institutions in Lisbon, and participated in the panel “Education, Family, Churches, and Europe”.

On October 25th, Guillaume de Vaulx gave a lecture entitled “What Arab Fables Say About Friendship Between Natural Enemies” at the French Institute in Beirut.

Workshop

On October 16th, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay participated in a workshop on Digital Humanities organized by the American University in Cairo. In particular, he presented the AlKindi online portal.

Teaching

On October 15th, Guillaume de Vaulx taught two classes, the first one entitled “Introduction to Islamic Philosophy: The Theoretical Question of Truth”, the second one entitled “The Political Question of Religious Obedience”, at the Beirut Higher School of Business.

On October 22nd and 24th, Adrien Candiard, OP taught an eight hour class on the “divine attributes” at Saint Joseph University in Beirut, for the Master’s program in Interreligious Studies. While there, the play Pierre et Mohamed, of which fr. Adrien is the author, was performed in several schools.

Appointment

On September 1st, Emmanuel Pisani, OP was appointed member of the Council for Interreligious Relations and New Religious Movements of the French Bishops’ Conference, led by Bishop Jean-Marc Aveline.

Interreligious dialogue

On October 12th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP and Amir Jajé, OP participated in a meeting of researchers and students from the University of Religions and Denominations (Qom, Iran), in partnership with the ISTR research lab “Islam and Otherness” and the CéSor (EHESS).

Visits

On October 14th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Nadim Ammann, who is in charge of Middle Eastern cooperation for the diocese of Cologne (Germany).

Invitations

On October 24th, several brothers of the IDEO were invited for lunch at the French residence to meet Mr. Charles Personnaz, who is conducting a project to preserve the Yezidi, Jewish, and Christian heritage in the Middle East.

Scholars’ House

In October, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Ms. Gyöngyi Oroszi, PhD student at the Avicenna Institute in Piliscsaba in Hungary, Mr. Jonathan Stutz, Professor of Church History at the Faculty of Protestant Theology, Ludwig-Maximilian University, Munich, and Mr. Nicolas Michel, professor of contemporary history at the University of Aix-en-Provence.

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Newsletter — September 2018

Dear friends,

The talk on the principles of interreligious dialogue, given by Bishop Jean-Marc Aveline at the second gala of IDEO (see the picture above), was inaugural in several ways. Not only did it inaugurate our academic year and our annual cycle of seminars (click here to register), but it was also a great exercise in communicating perceptive theological thought in simple words accessible to all: Catholics or non-Catholics, believers or non-believers alike (click here to listen to the conference).

May this new academic year offer us many opportunities to exchange ideas with depth and finesse on what are sometimes complicated and sensitive subjects.

Lectures

On September 12th, Mgr Jean-Marc Aveline, Auxiliary Bishop of Marseille and President of the Council for Interreligious Relations at the Bishop’s Conference of France, gave a lecture entitled “The theological Principles of Interreligious Dialogue”. Organized for the second Gala of the IDEO, this conference inaugurated our annual cycle of seminars. Bishop Aveline showed that interreligious dialogue is only a manifestation of a more fundamental dialogue that God engages with the world: a dialogue of service, to which the Church calls all believers to contribute. Click here to listen to the conference and read the report…

On September 21st, Jean Druel, OP, along with Mr. Ilyass Amharar, gave a lecture entitled “’A Little Monday’: Ancient Rebuttals and Defenses of the Teaching of Sībawayh”, as part of the fifth meeting of the “Foundations of Arabic Linguistics” group at Cambridge University.

From September 28-30th, Guillaume de Vaulx participated in the workshop “Art and Research” at the High School of Art in Aix-en-Provence, by setting up of a board game inspired by the fable of the animals in the Rasāʾil Iḫwān al-Ṣafā.

Round table

On September 26th, Jean Druel, OP participated in the “Shared Heritage” conference in New York, which inaugurated the cooperation between the National Library of France and the New York Public Library. He participated in a round table discussion on the topic of “Research and Dissemination” as part of our collaboration with the Web Portal “Libraries of the Orient”.

Award

On September 11th, the Norwegian organization Stefanus Alliance International awarded Amir Jajé, OP and Mr. Saad Saloum, founders of the Iraqi Council for Interreligious Dialogue, the Stefanus Prize 2018. This prize is awarded every two years to people who work in the field of human rights, with a particular focus on freedom of conscience and religion.

Dominican Roman Days

From September 26‒30th, the Dominican Roman Days were held in Rome, at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (the Angelicum). This is a gathering of about forty Dominican brothers and sisters who work in Muslim contexts. This meeting, which takes place every four years, is an opportunity to reflect together on the challenges of our activities and on the state of interreligious dialogue. Several members of IDEO participated: Rémi Chéno, OP, Jean Druel, OP, Robini Marianto, OP, Claudio Monge, OP and Jean Jacques Pérennès, OP. Jean Druel, OP gave a lecture on the linguistic problems of the intelligibility of the faith, and Jean Jacques Pérennès, OP gave a lecture entitled “Dialogue and Otherness: Pierre Claverie’s Contribution to the Reflection on Interreligious Dialogue”.

Visits

On September 6th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Marie-Hélène Avril, Lecturer at the University of Bordeaux.

On September 13th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. David Ruffel, in charge of the Book Service at the French Institute of Egypt.

On September 17th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Marie-Delphine Martellière and Mr. Paul-André Claudel from the Center for Alexandrian Studies (CEAlex).

On September 17th, we received Mr. Djim Dramé, Director of the Laboratory of Islamology of the Fundamental Institute of Black Africa (IFAN) in Dakar, and Mr. Ousmane Diaw, Editor in Cairo, to explore the possibility of collaboration on cataloguing the manuscripts of IFAN.

On September 29th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Julien Loiseau, Professor of Islamic history at the University of Aix-en-Provence.

Scholars’ House

In September, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House P. John Mallare, Scheutist priest from the Phillipines and PhD student in Islamic studies at PISAI (Rome); Mr. Martino Diez, Scientific Director of the International Oasis Foundation, as part of his research on the manuscripts of Ibn al-Makīn (672/1273); Mr. Benedict Coleridge, PhD student in political philosophy at Oxford University; Mr. András Szenczi, PhD student at the Avicenna Institute of Hungary; Mr. Farid Bouchiba, PhD student at the University of Nantes; Mrs. Claire Gallien, Lecturer at the Paul Valéry University in Montpellier

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Newsletter — July-August 2018

Dear friends,

I hope you had a good summer, fruitful yet relaxing at the same time. We often receive messages from friends lamenting the fact that this Newsletter reports past events more than it does future events. The idea behind the newsletter is to openly share what is really happening at the IDEO, rather than to use it as a forum to advertise. To keep informed about our upcoming activities, you can subscribe to this newsletter and check the “Seminars” box, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and you can view the calendar on our site.

This is going to be a year of collaboration with several Egyptian and international institutions: the Francophone sections of al-Azhar University, the Institute of Arabic Manuscripts of the Arab League in Cairo, the Tafsir Center in Riyadh, the Hindawi Foundation, the Egyptian Association for Historical Studies, the Department of Arabic and Islamic Civilization at the American University in Cairo (where three of our brothers are graduate students), and the Vatican Library, where Adrien de Fouchier, OP works. These collaborations reflect our commitment to participate in the efforts of Arabic-speaking Muslim scholars to break out of their isolation from international research and to study the classical texts in the light of contemporary human sciences.

A portion of these activities is funded by the European Delegation in Cairo, as part of the new project “Adawāt: Tools for Critical Thinking in Islamic Studies”. All this is also possible due to your help and support!

On behalf of the members of the IDEO, our collaborators, and our partners, a big thanks to you all.

Visits

On July 4th, we were invited to a dinner at the French Embassy to meet delegation from the French parliament who are working on the situation of the Christians in the East.

Library

From July 17‒19th, a training on cataloguing functionalities developed by Diamond-ILS for AlKindi was given to a team of four people from the Tafsir Center (Riyadh).

From July 20‒24th, Mr. Mohamed Malchouch, future director of the IDEO cataloguing department, came to visit the library. Currently in charge of the Division of Document Processing at the King Abdul Aziz al-Saoud Foundation, Mr. Mohamed Malchouch should be assuming his new duties in the IDEO library at the beginning of October.

Lectures

On July 24th, Jean Jacques Pérennès, OP gave a lecture at Saint-Brieuc titled, “Jerusalem: What are Paths Towards Peace?”. He gave the same lecture on July 31st in Trébeurden, on August 2nd in Tréguier, and again on August 6th in Rhuys.

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Newsletter — June 2018

Dear friends,

we are glad to announce the publication of volume 33 of MIDEO, dedicated to the Islamic theology of religious diversity. Just as Christianity, Islam must articulate its claim to universality with the reality of a multitude of other religions. What is their status? Are they willed by God? Are they outdated? Are they part of Islam itself? Muslim scholars have been exploring these questions since the early centuries of Islam, and this is the topic of this volume of MIDEO. Starting volume 31 (2015), and thanks to the work of IFAO, MIDEO is fully available online on the OpenEdition website, so you can read this volume 33 by clicking here. In addition, we are pleased to announce that we have made available online the articles of the previous volumes, from 1 (1954) to 30 (2014). In total, more than 220 scientific articles are accessible via the AlKindi catalogue. We hope you enjoy reading them!

Lectures

On June 7th, Guillaume de Vaulx gave a conference at the Orient Institut of Beirut entitled “Friendship between natural enemies: the ambitious brotherhood of Ikhwān al-Ṣafā”.

From June 19‒22nd, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP participated in the annual conference of the Middle East Library Committee, MELCom International, which was held this year at the Library of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Budapest.

On June 10th, Dennis Halft, OP gave a lecture entitled “Muḥammad Reżā Jadīd al-Islām (d. 1266/1849) and his anti-Jewish polemical work” at the international workshop “The Jews of Iran: Society, culture and politics through the ages” organized at Tel Aviv University, Israel.

On June 18th and 19th, Amir Jajé, OP participated in the international conference “Human rights and conditions for inclusive citizenship in conflict zones” organized in Oslo by HL-senteret Center on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

From June 26‒28th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP participated in the second international congress of PLURIEL “Islam and belongings” during which he gave a lecture entitled “Al-walāʾ wa-l-barāʾ: issues of a Salafist principle on the perception and the status of the other”, at the Gregorian University in Rome.

Interviews

On June 25th, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP and Jean Druel, OP were interviewed by the Saudi channel Al-Arabiya as part of a television documentary on the IDEO library.

On June 28th, Jean Druel, OP was interviewed on the work of the IDEO by Mr. Amr Mabrouk on Radio Cairo.

Visits

On June 16th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Amar Ouali, from the military mission of the French Embassy in Cairo.

On June 18th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Nora Kalbarczyk, Head of the Middle East Zone for KAAD, the German Catholic University Exchange Service, which offers scholarships to students from the Middle East in Germany. She was accompanied by Fr. Kamil William and Mr. Michel Ghattas, her correspondents in Egypt.

On June 20th, we welcomed for lunch professor Mohamed Serag, Director of the Department of Arabic Studies at the American University in Cairo, and Mrs. Wafya Hamouda, his assistant.

On June 22nd,  we welcomed for lunch Mr. Simon Schäfer, a trainee from the Political Department of the Swiss Embassy in Cairo.

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Newsletter — May 2018

Dear friends,

The academic year has ended like last year, with a seminar session (photo) and an ifṭār to which a hundred people attended. It was an opportunity to welcome new students and researchers at the IDEO. At a time when more and more researchers work alone and only document on the Internet, it is important to recall the importance of human exchanges and libraries, because not everything is on the Internet and nothing can replace the encounter with other human beings.

Seminars

On May 7th, a session of the joint seminar between Al-Azhar and IDE), discussing the relationship between faith and reason, took place at the Faculty of Languages and Translations at Al-Azhar University. We studied a chapter from the book The Pillars of Faith by the famous Egyptian preacher Muḥammad al-Ghazālī (1917‒1996). Click here to read the report of the session…

On May 22nd, Adrien Candiard, OP led the last seminar of the academic year, titled “The Issue of the Existence of God in Ibn Taymiyya”. Can we prove that God exists with rational methods? At the end of the session, an ifṭār gathered the hundred attendees who had defied the heat to come. Click here to read the report…

Lectures

On May 11th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave a lecture called “Al-Ghazali and His Approach to Diversity” at the Interreligious Documentation Center of the Dominicans of Istanbul.

On May 14th, Mateus Domingues Da Silva, OP gave two presentations entitled “Islam as an Act of Faith” and “The Relationship between kalām and falsafa in Classical and Post-Classical Islam”, as part of a meeting organized by the Rio de Janeiro regional section of the National Conference of Brazilian Bishops and by the Commission on Faith and Reason of the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro.

On May 15th, Jean Druel, OP gave a lecture entitled “The Challenges of Studying Arabic” to students of DEAC (Department of Contemporary Arabic Education) in Cairo.

On May 24th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a conference-debate on the topic  “The Question of Heterodoxy in Islam” in front of about fifty prisoners at a penitentiary center in Bois d’Arcy in France.

On May 26th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave a lecture entitled “Untie for Dialogue, Connect for dialogue: The Mystery of Communion in Christianity” at EFY (French Yoga School) as part of the conference “Untie, Connect”.

On May 29th, Jean Jacques Pérennès, OP gave a lecture entitled “Padar Serge de Beaurecueil, a Dominican Scholar in Afghanistan”, as part of the conference “Afghanistan: society, freedom and proclamation of the Gospel” organized by CIAM (International Center for Mission and Formation) in Rome.

Collaboration among libraries

On May 10th, the second meeting of the collaborative group between Jesuit, IFAO and IDEO’s librarians was held at IFAO.

On May 17th, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP participated in a working day at the Forney Library in Paris. This day was devoted to RDA cataloguing of artifacts.

On May 21‒22nd, René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP participated in two working meetings with the Vatican Apostolic Library team in order to study possible collaborations in the field of Arabic manuscripts.

Day of studies

On May 3rd, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a study day entitled “The Question of Salvation in Christianity and Islam”, as part of the formation days for hospital chaplains in Lyon.

Visits

From April 24th to May 4th, we received Rajen Lakra, OP who was sent on an exploratory mission to the IDEO to think about the foundation of a Dominican center for interreligious dialogue in India.

On May 1st, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Mikaïl Chebel, PhD student at EHESS, and Miss. Miléna Planche, from the Seasonal Poles of the French Institute.

From May 8 to 14th, we received a visit from Emilio Platti, OP.

On May 11th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Albin Andrieux, Professor at the IDAI (Institute of International Business Law) in Cairo.

On May 27th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Isolde Lehnert (Librarian of the German Institute of Archaeology), Mrs. Jane Smythe (Egyptologist at the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities) and Heike Schmidt (journalist).

On May 28th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Damien Fréjaville (responsible for IFAO’s heritage and security), Mr. et Mrs. Villalbi (Programmers), Mrs. Agnès Macquin (librarian of IFAO), and Mrs. Nermine Nabil (librarian of IFAO) as part of a reflection on the extension work of the IFAO library.

Scholars’ House

In May, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Mr. Walid Saleh, Professor at the University of Toronto, Mr. András Mércz and Miss. Gyöngyi Oroszi PhD students at the Avicenna Institute in Piliscsaba, Hungary.

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Newsletter — April 2018

Dear friends,

The conference on the interactions between Shiites and Christians organized in Paris was a great moment in the life of the Institute. Even if the lectures were highly technical, they captured everyone’s interest by overlapping and allowing exciting and accessible discussions for all present. This is exactly the aim of research: to go down into specifics that may seem too detailed, then to touch the universal and link the questions of our contemporaries to the subjects of the day, yet with a historical and critical depth that is not possible with a generalist approach.

Thanks to all the speakers and to you all for your participation and support!

Conference

On April 11th, 12th and 13, Emmanuel Pisani, OP, Dennis Halft, OP and Amir Jajé, OP organized, in partnership with ISTR in Paris (Institute of Science and Theology of Religions) and GRIEM (Interdisciplinary Research Group on Missionary Writings), a conference sponsored by the associations “Friends of IDEO” and the “Œuvre d’Orient”, on the interaction between Twelver Shiites and Christians. Read the report here…

IDEO Seminar

On April 30th, Ms. Noëmie Lucas, PhD candidate at Paris Panthéon-Sorbonne University, led a seminar session entitled “Use of Poetry: From the Political to the Historiographical”, based on an episode told by al-Balāḏurī (d. 279/892?) in his book Ansāb al-ašrāf, the construction of the al-Mubārak channel by the Governor of Iraq « b. ʿAbd Allāh Allāh al-Qasrī (d. 126/743). Read the report…

Lectures

On April 5th, Jean Druel, OP gave a lecture on AlKindi, IDEO’s cataloguing system, to researchers at the Academic Journals Observatory, which depends directly on the Sheikh of al-Azhar.

On April 6th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP, with Mr. Christian Lochon and Bishop Pascal Gollnisch, participated in the Diocesan Day of Formation for Catholic Teaching in Toulon where he gave two lectures entitled: “Dialogue and Proclamation in the Thought of Benedict XVI” and “Diversity in Islam”.

On April 9th and 10th, Emilio Platti, OP and Adrien Candiard, OP participated in the interreligious theological working group of SNRM (National Service of the Bishops of France for Relations with Muslims).

On April 15th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a morning of studies on interreligious dialogue at the diocesan center in Bondy, as part of the formation days of the Diocese of Saint-Denis.

On April 23th, Rémi Chéno, OP moderated one of the sessions of the day organized by Ms. Naïma Bouras and the CEDEJ at the French Institute of Egypt in Cairo, entitled: “Feminine Religious Dynamics in Egypt: What Forms of Engagement?”.

On April 25th, Guillaume de Vaulx organized a seminar at the French Institute of the Near East in Beirut entitled “The Mirrors of Medieval Princes: Between the Art of Governing and the Art of Submission”. He also gave a lecture at the seminar, entitled “Abbasid Fables: From Being Mirrors of Princes to being Mirrors of the People”.

On April 23rd, Amir Jajé, OP gave a lecture entitled “The Philosophy of the Hussein Revolt” at the international conference “Spring of Martyrdom” in Karbala (Iraq)

From April 26‒28th, Amir Jajé, OP gave a lecture entitled “Migration (Emigration and Immigration) and Conversion as a Challenge of Theological Teaching: the Situation in the Near East”, at a conference on theological teaching in the Near East at Holy Spirit University of Kaslik in Lebanon.

Award

On April 3rd, the Faculty of Arts of Cairo University awarded to Giuseppe Scattolin, MCCJ the emblem of the Faculty in recognition of his contribution to the renewal of Sufi studies through his numerous scientific works.

Interreligious Dialogue

On April 14th, Amir Jajé, OP organized a Muslim-Christian meeting around the Virgin Mary at the Dominican Priory of the Annunciation in Paris. This meeting was an opportunity for Christians and Muslims of different persuasions to pray together.

Study trip

From April 15‒20th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP accompanied the ISTR study trip from Paris to Rabat and Casablanca.

Visits

From March 29th to April 9th, we received the visit of Adrien de Fouchier, OP who is works at the Vatican Library, and is writing a catalogue of Christian Arabic manuscripts.

On April 2nd, we welcomed Mr. Georges Fahmi, researcher at the European Academic Institute in Florence, who works on the rapprochement between al-Azhar and the Vatican in recent years.

On April 16th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Éléonor Fallot, coordinator of the CCFD (Catholic Committee for Hunger and Development) for the region.

On April 16th, we also welcomed for lunch Mrs. Sylvie Nony, researcher in the history of Arabic sciences, who is currently working on the persistence of the idea that some people really believed that the earth was flat.

From April 18‒25th, we received Mr. Dominique Avon, researcher in History, who is currently working on the history of the freedom of conscience in Islam.

On April 25th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Michael Driessen, Professor of Political Sciences at John Cabot University in Rome, who works on the geopolitics of interreligious dialogue.

Scholars’ House

In April, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Ms. Noëmie Lucas, PhD candidate at Paris Panthéon-Sorbonne University, Mr. Olivier Rampnoux, professor at the University of Poitiers, and Mr. Sami Benkherfallah, PhD student in history and archaeology at the University of Poitiers.

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Newsletter — March 2018

Dear friends,

On March 27th, we signed a contract with the European Delegation in Cairo for the funding of the project “Adawāt: Tools for Critical Thinking in Islamic Studies” in the amount of 500,000 euros over four years (2018-2022). This amount will finance several activities whose common goal is to provide students, researchers, and teachers of Islamic studies with the tools that allow them to study Islam from a critical point of view. Such as, the installation of our AlKindi software at the Institute of Manuscripts of the Arab League in Cairo, French classes and training sessions in France, PhD Workshops, assistance for the international mobility of students, lecturers, and teachers from several departments of Al-Azhar University, and finally, during the four years of the project, the organizing of two international conferences in Cairo. The educational part will be managed directly by the French Institute.

The IDEO and its partners in Egypt ( the Institute of Manuscripts, the University of Al-Azhar and the French Institute), with the support of the European Union, wish to assist in the training of the new generation of specialists in Islam.

Seminar al-Azhar University and the IDEO

On March 22nd, a session of our joint Al-Azhar-IDEO seminar took place on the topic of the epistemology of Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728/1328). The three commented on an extract from the long fatwā which beings his book Darʾ taʿāruḍ al-ʿaql wa-l-naql, and where Ibn Taymiyya explains his method of reading sacred texts (i.e. the Qurʾān and the Ḥadīṯ). Read the report of the seminar…

Lectures and conferences

On March 5th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave at the Catholic Institute of Paris (ICP) a counterpoint  presentation in the presence of François Julien on the occasion of the publication of his book, Les ressources du christianisme (Paris, 2018). The round table was attended by Philippe Bordeyne and Emmanuel Lincot.

On March 12th, Emilio Platti, OP participated in a conference entitled “Christianity and the Qurʾān: From the Origins of Islam to the Medieval Period”, organized by the Catholic University of Leuven.

On March 12th and 13th, Jean Druel, OP participated in the 5th Loyola Hall Symposium in Lahore, Pakistan, which was devoted to interreligious dialogue. His lecture was entitled “The Question of Truth: Hermeneutic Keys for Dialogue”. On March 14th, he participated in a round-table with Sheikh Muḥammad ʿAmmār Khān Nāṣir.

On March 14th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP participated in a round-table discussion at the conference of the Higher Institute of Ecumenical Studies in Paris (ISEO) on the topic of “Ecumenism and Interreligious Dialogue”.

On March 17th, Adrien Candiard, OP attended in the annual meeting of the Philanthropos Institute in Fribourg and gave a lecture on his book Comprendre l’islam, ou plutôt: pourquoi on n’y comprend rien (Paris, 2016).

On March 19th, Rémi Chéno, OP gave a lecture entitled “One Body in the Spirit or The Mystery of the Body of Christ” at the Dominican Priory in Tours.

From March 19-22nd, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave two lectures entitled “Al-Ġazālī and the non-Muslims” and “The Christian Foundations of the Theology of Teligions” at the Institute Dar El Hadith El Hassania in Rabat. He also participated in a research session on the topic of “Exegesis of Sacred Texts”.

On March 20th, Jean Druel, OP participated in a methodology workshop organized by the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) on the issue of documentary sources. He made a presentation on the contextual catalog of IDEO.

On March 21st, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave a lecture entitled “Methodology in Sociology of Religions: al-Ġazālī’s contribution to the human sciences”, at the Department of Arts and Humanities at Mohammad V University in Rabat.

On March 21st, Dennis Halft, OP gave a lecture entitled “A Christian Reading of the Qurʾān: The Polemical Work of the Jesuit Missionary Michel Nau (1633-83)”, at the international workshop “Writing the History of Jerusalem: Sources and Methods”, organized by the French Research Center (Centre de Recherche Français) in Jerusalem.

On March 23rd, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led the research lab entitled “Islam and Otherness”, organized by the Institute of Science and Theology of Religions (ISTR) on the topic of “The reception of Bergson’s thought in the Arabic-speaking and Turkish-speaking world” with the participation of Dilek Sarmis and Markus Kneer.

On March 27th, Emilio Platti, OP gave a conference entitled “Fractures in the History of Modern Egypt”, at the University Foundation in Brussels.

Visits

On March 5th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Christian Robin, specialist in pre-Islamic Arabia.

On March 22nd, we received the visit of Mr. Neville Kyrke-Smith, the director of the Church in Need for the UK.

On March 23rd, we received the visit of Mr. Peter Schwartzstein, journalist for National Geographic, and Mr. Hani Samir, Journalist for Monitor.

On March 25th, we received the visit of Mr. Aurélien Javel, PhD student at Lyon-3 in Public Law.

On March 29th, we received the visit of P. Samir Khalil, P. Fadel Sidarouss, P. Henri Boulad and Mr. Paul Farah, to discuss a collaboration in the management of our Jesuit and Dominican libraries in Cairo.

On March 30th, we received Fr. György Fodor, dean of the Faculty of human sciences at the Pázmány Péter Catholic University of Hungary, and his wife, Ms Júlia Sárközy, professor of archaeology.

Scholars’ House

In March, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Mrs. Nadirah Mansour, PhD student at Princeton University, Mr. Marius Dumas, student at the French School for Biblical and Archaeological Studies in Jerusalem (EBAF), Mr. Olivier Rampnoux, professor at the University of Poitiers, and Ms. Haruko Sakaedani, Arabic teacher at Keio University (Tokyo).

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Newsletter — February 2018

Dear friends,

The month of February has been very busy, due in part to the annual Book Fair and the many personalities passing through Cairo. We were impressed by the renewed vitality of Arab publishers, especially of the Iraqis and Syrians. We were also able to obtain many classical Arabic texts and have very nice encounters. It would seem that the Cairo Book Fair confirms its central position in the market of the Arabic-Muslim heritage texts.

Lectures

On February 3rd, Emmanuel Pisani, OP gave a lecture entitled “Interreligious Dialogue:  Challenges and Perspectives”, as part of the educational days of the diocese of Tours.

On February 4th, Amir Jajé, OP took part in a round table entitled “Commit to Eastern Christians: What is the place of the interreligious dialogue in establishing a society of peace in the Middle East?”, organized by the French Catholic organization Œuvre d’Orient as part of the Ecclesia Campus (Lille).

On February 6th, Adrien Candiard, OP gave a lecture on his book Comprendre l’islam, ou plutôt : pourquoi on n’y comprend rien (Paris: Flammarion, 2016) at the Dominican priory in Bordeaux.

On February 6th, Rémi Chéno, OP gave a lecture entitled “The challenge of the plurality of religions”, the topic of his book Dieu au pluriel (Paris: Cerf, 2017), in Agora-Tête-d’Or in Lyon. He repeated this lecture in English at the Dominican priory in Lund (Sweden) on February 16th, and again at the Dominican priory in Strasbourg on February 19th.

On February 9th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP and Marco Dimichelis led an ISTR research seminar entitled “Islam and Otherness”.

From February 19-23rd, Emmanuel Pisani, OP took part in a session of Islamology entitled “Prayer in Islam”, at Notre-Dame de Vie in Venasque.

On February 28th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a seminar entitled “Al-Ġazālī between criticism and apology of philosophy or how the philosophy is convened for its theological-political projects”, at the ENS in Lyon.

Nomination

On February 26th, Dennis Halft, OP was appointed as a postdoctoral fellow of the Martin Buber Society of Fellows in the Humanities at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, from the academic year 2018/19 onwards. The Martin Buber Society of Fellows, a joint venture of the Hebrew University and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, aims at fostering inter-disciplinary and inter-cultural academic discourse at the highest level among outstanding young scholars from Israel and Germany together with selected senior colleagues.

Visits

On February 1st, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Ali Benmakhlouf, philosopher, who was invited to Egypt by the French Institute.

On February 2nd, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Frédéric Bauden, specialist of Arabic manuscripts at the University of Louvain, who was invited to Egypt by the IFAO.

On February 4th, we welcomed Mr. Sarhan Dhouib, philosopher at the University of Kassel in Germany, who was invited to Egypt by the Cairo University.

On February 15th, we received the visit of Mrs. Carla Thomas, from the British Foreign and Commonwealth Ministry, who carried-out a mission to Egypt.

On February 16th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Nadirah Mansour, PhD student at the University of Princeton, USA.

On February 19th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Helen LaFave, Minister-Counselor of the United States Embassy in Egypt, and Mrs. Elaine Jones, Political and Religious Affairs Officer.

On February 20th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Tomás Guardia, Ambassador of Panama in Egypt, and Mrs. Julissa de Hoyos, Minister-Counselor.

On February 27th, we received the visit of Mrs. Inessa Beloglazova, Professor of Arabic at the Federal University of Kazan, Tatarstan, Russia.

Scholars’ House

In February, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Mrs. Sadia Agsous, post-PhD fellow at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris.

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Newsletter — January 2018

Dear friends,

The IDEO conference on Ḥadīṯ, organized in partnership with the French Institute of Egypt (see photo), was an extraordinary occasion for young specialists from several different countries to meet together. Methodological issues largely dominated the conversation: how to study Ḥadīṯ today, is this great set of literature attributed to the Prophet? The quality of the discussions and the diversity of participants encourage us to continue our efforts in building bridges between researchers in Islamic studies in the West and in the East.

Conference on Ḥadīṯ

On January 11, 12 and 13, the IDEO, in partnership with the French Institute, organized an international conference entitled “The emergence of Ḥadīṯ as the authority of knowledge”. For three days, there were lectures given in Arabic and English, as well as workshops, led by Dr. Walid Saleh and Dr. Aisha Geissinger. Read the report…

Seminars

From January 6-13th, we welcomed M. Jari Kaukua, Professor of Islamic philosophy at the University of Jyväskylä in Finland. On January 8th, he led a seminar on al-Suhrawardī (d. 587/1191). Instead of totally rejecting the Avicennian notion of substance, al-Suhrawardi integrates it into a wider theory of knowledge.

Lectures

On January 2nd, Dennis Halft, OP gave a lecture entitled “What Did Jewish and Christian Converts to Islam Contribute to Muslim Polemics against Judaism and Christianity?”, at the Center for the Study of Conversion and Inter-Religious Encounters at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beer Sheba, Israel.

On January 11th, Dennis Halft, OP gave a lecture entitled “Vatican Censorship and the Printing of the Gospels in Arabic”, at the international conference “Typographia Linguarum Externarum. The Medici Press: Knowledge and Cultural Transfer around 1600” organized by Max-Planck Kunsthistorisches Institute (Florence, Italy).

On January 25th, Emmanuel Pisani, OP led a discussion on the origins of Islam with Jacqueline Chabbi, Ruth Grosrichard, and Esma Hind Tengour, at the Arab World Institute in Paris.

Visits

From January 9-15th, we received the visit of Mr. Bruno Racine, President of the Association of  “The Friends of IDEO”, Bertrand Wallon, secretary general and Denys Bourguignat, responsible for the publication of the The Friends of IDEO Newsletter.

On January 10th, we received the visit of Mr. ʿAbd al-Raḥmān al-Ahdal and Muḥammad Ṣāliḥ from The Tafsīr Center  in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia as part of our cooperative agreement.

From January 18-20th, we received the visit of P. Thom Sicking and P. Gabriel Hachem, responsible for the publication of  Proche-Orient chrétien magazine, who came to study the possibility of collaborations between IDEO and the magazine.

On January 19th, we received the visit of Charles Saint-Prot, director of the Observatory of Geopolitical studies (Paris) and Thierry Rambaud, Professor of Public Law at the University Paris Descartes-Sorbonne.

On January 29th, we welcomed for lunch Mrs. Jessica Olausson and Mr. Mark Seah, Minister Counsellors at the Embassies of Sweden and Singapore, respectively.

Scholars’ House

In January, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Mrs. Catherine Mayeur-Jaouen, IDEO member and Professor of History of Modern and Contemporary Islam at the University of Paris-Sorbonne, Mr. Lutz Rogler, Professor at the University of Berlin, and Mr. Ronan Humeau, student of Arabic and International Relations at the National Institute of Language and Civilization (INALCO – France).

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Newsletter — December 2017

Dear friends,

In the face of the dramatic situation that is shaking the Arab world, the victims of which are Muslims and Christians, atheists, believers and non-believers of all religions, more and more people are getting up and engaging in the discovery of the beautiful internal diversity of this Arab world in crisis. At the IDEO, we are witnessing an increasing will among each other to overcome our mutual fears through study, culture, education, and cooperation.

We hope that our conference on Ḥadīṯ on January 11, 12 and 13 in partnership with al-Azhar University and the French Institute will be another occasion to build our knowledge together. Click here to read the presentation of the conference… Click here to download the programme…

Seminars

On December 12th, Guillaume de Vaulx, led a seminar on the topic “No one will be saved if all are not saved”. The author of Rasāʾil Iḫwān al-ṣafā, whom Guillaume de Vaulx believes to have discovered to be Aḥmad al-Ṭayyib al-Saraḫrsī (d. 286/899), offers an original solution to the question of universal salvation, based on complementary relationships between religions. Click here to read the report…

Lectures and conferences

On December 2nd, Amir Jajé, OP participated in a conference entitled “Migration, Displacement and Diaspora: Demographic Changes in the Arab World 1917-2017”, organized by the by the Christian Academic Forum for Arab Citizenship (CAFCAW) in Limassol, Cyprus.

On December 4th, Amir Jajé, OP attended the meeting of the Administrative Council of the “Network of Religious Faculties in the Arab World” in Limassol, Cyprus.

On December 8th, Dennis Halft, OP gave a lecture entitled “New Evidence for the History of Iranian Jewry and Imāmī-Jewish Relations from Shīʿī Manuscript Repositories in Iran”, at the international conference “Shii Studies: The State of the Art” at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, N.J., USA.

On December 21st, Guillaume de Vaulx organized a study day dedicated to The Brethren of Purity (Rasāʾil Iḫwān al-Ṣafā), whose studies have been revolutionized in recent years, in the SPHERE laboratory of History of Science at Paris-Diderot University. Discussions with speakers Pascal Crozet, Ahmad Hasnaoui, Cristina Cerami, Mehrnaz Katouzian, Husein Massoumi, and their doctoral students have allowed some progress in the field of the Arab pythagorianism.

Thesis defense

On December 2nd, Adrien de Fouchier, OP defended his doctoral thesis entitled “The Christian Arabic Manuscript of the 13th century: Considerations from the Vatican Archives”.

On December 7th, under the supervision of Dominique Avon, Anaïs-Trissa Khatchadourian defended her doctoral thesis entitled “Moussa Sadr: The Intellectual Biography of a Shiite cleric” at the University of Maine. The other jury members were Mohammad-Ali Amir-Moezzi, Constance ArminjonCéline Borello, Pierre-Jean Luizard, and Chantal Verdeil.

Book Fair

From December 4-10th, Mr. Ahmad Chleilat and René-Vincent du Grandlaunay, OP went to the Arab Book Fair to purchase books. In total, they bought 300 titles, mostly old texts.

Open House Day

On December 16th, Mr. Guillaume de Vaulx organized an open house day to introduce the library and IDEO to new readers (photo). Around twenty students and researchers came from different universities and specialties.   Their diversity is impressive: men, women, Egyptians, foreigners, Muslims, Christians, Salafists and Sufis, Liberals, Coptic, Evangelicals…And their interest in our work encourages us.

Interviews

On December 15th, Jean Druel, OP was interviewed by Mrs. Alessandra Buzzetti (MediaSet) and Mrs. Cristiana Caricato (TV2000) during their trip to Cairo organized by the Ministry of Tourism to encourage Italian pilgrimages in the footsteps of the Holy Family in Egypt.

Visits

On December 5th, we received the visit of Mrs. Nayla Tabbara from the Lebanese Foundation Adyan, which works in the field of interreligious dialogue and citizenship.

On December 9th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Kamal al Ekhnawy a representative of the Bahá’í community in Egypt.

On December 20th, we welcomed for lunch Mr. Ibrahim Mansour, Ph.D student at the University of California, Sainta Barbara, and ARCE fellow in Cairo, who is working on the origins of the Shadhiliyya Sufi.

On December 21st, we received the visit of about twenty researchers from the Coptic Studies Center of the Alexandria Library.

Scholars’ House

In December, we had the pleasure of receiving at the Scholars’ House Mrs. Fabienne Laumonier who makes radio documentaries for France Culture and Arteradio, and Mrs. Anne-Sylvie Boisliveau, Professor at the University of Strasbourg.

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