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Martha G. Newman, Chair BUR 529, Mailcode A3700, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-7737

Hina Azam

Ph.D.- 2007, Duke University

Assistant Professor, Department of Middle Eastern Studies
Hina Azam

Contact

  • Phone: 475-8393 (no voicemail - please call department to leave a message)
  • Office: WMB 5.120A
  • Campus Mail Code: F9400

Interests

Islamic jurisprudence, theology, exegesis, hadith studies; Women/sexuality and Islam; Sexual Violence in Islamic Law

R S 319 • Introduction To Islam

44170 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm MEZ 1.306
(also listed as ANS 301M, HIS 306N, ISL 310 )
show description

The objective of this course is to give students an understanding of what it means to be Muslim, in terms of beliefs (cosmology and theology), practices (rituals and moral teachings), and culture. In order to achieve this three-part objective, we will read materials from various perspectives and of different genres. We will devote some time to the history of the foundations and civilization of Islam, for even if a religion is conceived in terms of universals and ideals, its actual manifestation is always tempered by historical, cultural and social context. We will explore the meaning of Islam as a worldview and a moral system through examining its doctrinal, ritual, philosophical, ethical and spiritual dimensions. This course is designed for students with no prior knowledge of Islam.

Texts

To be provided by instructor. 

Grading

Final exam, Midterm exam, Quizzes, Class attendance

R S 358 • Islamic Law

44255 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CAL 200
(also listed as ISL 340, MEL 321, MES 342, WGS 340 )
show description

From the beginnings of Islam in the 7th century until today, observant Muslims have sought to live their lives in accordance with Islamic moral law, or shari‘a. This upper-division course is designed to give students a foundation in the substantive teachings of the shari‘a, which comprises not only what we normally think of as law, but also ethics and etiquette. Specific areas of coverage include the following: rules of ritual worship, ethical principles, etiquette, family and personal status law, criminal law, economic and contract law, constitutional and international law. Although the bulk of the course will concern classical Islamic law, we will take time out to discuss issues of contemporary concern as well, such as gender equity, human rights, medical ethics, and warfare. Readings will be in both secondary literature and primary texts (in translation). This course will assume a basic working knowledge of Islam. This course carries a writing flag and global cultures flag.

Texts

Tentative: The Origins and Evolution of Islamic Law, by Wael Hallaq The Spirit of Islamic Law, by Bernard Weiss Religion of Islam, by Muhammad Ali Supplementary readings (articles, book chapters)

Grading

5 Essays, Attendance, Preparedness & Participation

R S 325G • The Qur'An

44180 • Fall 2013
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.128
(also listed as C L 323, CTI 375, ISL 340, MEL 321, MES 342, WGS 340 )
show description

In this course, we will study the religion of Islam through its sacred text, the Qur’an. To this end, this course will entail extensive reading of the Qur’an itself, as well as of other texts. In our studies, we will focus on the following themes of the Qur’an: cosmology and theology, ethical principles, ritual prescriptions, and legal injunctions. We will also examine some of the prominent symbols, images and rhetorical structures of the Qur’an. Through reading the prophetic narratives, we will have an opportunity to compare Qur’anic and Biblical accounts of the major prophets shared by Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The syllabus also includes an inquiry into role of the Qur’an in Muslim devotion and as a medium for artistic expression. We will also discuss the tradition of interpretation (or “exegesis”), especially as it pertains to those verses that engender the most debate today: those surrounding politics, intercommunal (i.e. interreligious) relations, and women/gender. Prior knowledge of Islam is helpful but not required for this course.

R S 358 • Islamic Theology

44295 • Fall 2013
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm WEL 3.402
(also listed as CTI 375, ISL 340, MEL 321, MES 342 )
show description

Islamic Theology may be understood as that branch of knowledge that comprises the way that Muslims have conceived the natures of God, humanity and the natural world, as well as the relationships between these three.  Muslim contemplation of these subjects has given rise to a number of debates and doctrines.  Some of these have had to do with issues such as the relationship between human will and the divine will, or the origins of sinfulness.  Other disputes have had to do with the nature of governance and the role of the ruler in effecting salvation.  Yet another area of questioning has had to do with the limits of rational knowledge and possibility of meta-cognitive experience of God.  These three classical areas of inquiry – that is, political theory, systematic theology (dogmatics) and mystical theology (sufi theosophy) – will form the main areas of focus in this upper division course.

R S 319 • Introduction To Islam

43850 • Spring 2013
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm GEA 105
(also listed as HIS 306N, ISL 310 )
show description

The objective of this course is to give students an understanding of what it means to be Muslim, in terms of beliefs (cosmology and theology), practices (rituals and moral teachings), and culture. In order to achieve this three-part objective, we will read materials from various perspectives and of different genres. We will devote some time to the history of the foundations and civilization of Islam, for even if a religion is conceived in terms of universals and ideals, its actual manifestation is always tempered by history, culture and social realities. We will explore the meaning of Islam as a worldview and a moral system through examining its doctrinal, ritual, philosophical, moral and spiritual dimensions. This course is designed for students with no prior knowledge of Islam.

Texts/readings:

• David Waines, An Introduction to Islam (tentative) • Asma Afsaruddin, The First Muslims

• Eric Geoffroy, Introduction to Sufism: The Inner Path of Islam

• Excerpts from the following: -The Qur’an and the Bible, any translation - Imam Nawawi, Riyadh al-Salihin - Imam Ghazali, Inner Dimensions of Islamic Worship - John A. Williams, The Word of Islam - Omid Safi, Memories of Muhammad - John Esposito, Islam: The Straight Path, 4th edition

Grading requirements:

Four Unit Tests, 10% each (40% total), One Midterm Exam, 20%, One Final Exam, 25%, Class Attendance, 15%

R S 390T • Qur'Anic Exegesis

43990 • Spring 2013
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ 1.104
(also listed as MEL 380, MES 386 )
show description

The Qur’an has served the Muslim community from its initial proclamation by Muhammad until today as a source of spiritual insight, ethico-legal guidance, sacred narratives, and theology principles. In addition, Muslims have held it to contain truths about history, the natural world, and human psychology. Believed by Muslims to comprise the exact words of God and therefore an infallible indicator of the divine mind, its interpreters have hung complex doctrines on its precise wording and turns of phrase. As the Islamic scholarly disciplines gradually took on lives of their own, becoming traditions somewhat independent of and removed from this first source of religion, the Qur’an remained the ultimate point of reference and arbiter of truth: A doctrine or argument that was regarded (or portrayed) as antithetical to the Qur’an could never hope to thrive among practitioners. In this graduate seminar, we will progress along dual trajectories: One trajectory will center on the academic study of Qur’anic interpretation and commentary, known as tafsir. In this vein, we will read scholarly literature, in English, on the genre, nature and history of tafsir. Our second trajectory will involve reading from primary tafsir texts in Arabic. Reading selections will be taken from a variety of exegetical subgenres, such as rationalist and traditionalist, Sunni and Shii, mystical and legalist, classical and modern.

Texts/readings:

English readings will include sections from the following works: • Walid Saleh, The Formation of the Classical Tafsir Tradition: The Qur'an Commentary of al-Tha`labi • Andrew Rippin, ed. The Qur'an: Formative Interpretation. • Andrew Rippin, ed. Approaches to the History of the Interpretation of the Qur'an. • Andrew Rippin. The Qur'an and Its Interpretive Tradition. • Meir Bar-Asher. Scripture and Exegesis in Early Imami-Shi`ism. Other supplementary articles may also be added. Arabic/primary text readings will include sections from the following exegeses: • Qurtubi. al-Jami` li Ahkam. (medieval, Sunni/legal) • Tha`labi. al-Kashf wa al-Bayan. (medieval Sunni) • Ibn Kathir. Tafsir Ibn Kathir. (medieval Sunni) • Tabari. Jami` al-Bayan. (medieval Sunni) • Suyuti. al-Itqan fi `Ulum al-Qur'an and Tafsir al-Jalalayn. (medieval Sunni) • Razi. Mafatih al-Ghayb. (medieval Sunni/Ash`ari) • Kashani. al-Safi. (medieval Shii) • Tabarsi. Majma` al-Bayan. (medieval Imami Shii) • Tusi. al-Tibyan al-Jami`. (medieval Imami Shii) • A`qam. Tafsir al-A`qam. (medieval Zaydi Shii) • Zamakhshari. al-Kashshaf. (medieval Mu`tazili) • Qushayri. Lata'if al-Isharat. (medieval Sufi/Sunni) • Ibn `Arabi. Tafsir al-Qur'an. (medieval Sufi/Sunni) • Alusi. Ruh al-Ma`ani. (modern Sunni) • Qutb. Fi Zilal al-Qur'an. (modern Sunni/salafi) • Mawdudi. Tafhim al-Qur'an, English translation from Urdu. (modern Sunni/salafi) • Shirazi. Taqrib al-Qur'an. (modern Shii) • Tabataba'i. al-Mizan. (modern Shii)

 

Grading requirements:

Presence, preparedness and participation = 35%, Term paper, due in stages (proposal, bibliography, introduction/outline, and final paper) = 45%, Presentation on research paper = 20%

R S 325G • The Qur'An

43710 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ 1.306
(also listed as C L 323, ISL 340, MEL 321, MES 342, WGS 340 )
show description

In this course, we will study the religion of Islam through its sacred text, the Qur’an. To this end, this course will entail extensive reading of the Qur’an itself, as well as of other texts. In our studies, we will focus on the following themes of the Qur’an: cosmology and theology, ethical principles, ritual prescriptions, and legal injunctions. We will also examine some of the prominent symbols, images and rhetorical structures of the Qur’an. Through reading the prophetic narratives, we will have an opportunity to compare Qur’anic and Biblical accounts of the major prophets shared by Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The syllabus also includes an inquiry into role of the Qur’an in Muslim devotion and as a medium for artistic expression. We will also discuss the tradition of interpretation (or “exegesis”), especially as it pertains to those verses that engender the most debate today: those surrounding politics, intercommunal (i.e. interreligious) relations, and women/gender. Prior knowledge of Islam is helpful but not required for this course.

R S 358 • Islamic Theology

43780 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm BEN 1.122
(also listed as CTI 375, ISL 340, MES 342 )
show description

Islamic Theology may be understood as that branch of knowledge that comprises the way that Muslims have conceived the natures of God, humanity and the natural world, as well as the relationships between these three.  Muslim contemplation of these subjects has given rise to a number of debates and doctrines.  Some of these have had to do with issues such as the relationship between human will and the divine will, or the origins of sinfulness.  Other disputes have had to do with the nature of governance and the role of the ruler in effecting salvation.  Yet another area of questioning has had to do with the limits of rational knowledge and possibility of meta-cognitive experience of God.  These three classical areas of inquiry – that is, political theory, systematic theology (dogmatics) and mystical theology (sufi theosophy) – will form the main areas of focus in this upper division course. 

R S 358 • Religions Of The Middle East

43771 • Spring 2012
Meets TTH 930am-1100am MEZ 1.306
(also listed as ISL 340, MES 322K )
show description

Course Description

How is Christianity in Egypt different from Christianity in the U.S.?  What do Zoroastrians believe?  Is there a relationship between Islam and the Baha’i religion?  These are the types of questions that this course is intended to answer.  The course will include a basic overview of Zoroastrianism, Judaism in the Middle East, Eastern Christianity, Islam, and the Baha’i religion, with a focus on the manifestations of these religions in the Middle East.  Focus will primarily be on cosmological doctrines, scriptures, moral principles, sacred history and geography, and liturgical practices, although historical and cultural developments within these traditions will be covered as necessary.  Students may have opportunities to read primary texts as well, schedule permitting.

Texts

Islam in the Middle East: A Living Tradition, by G.P. Makris

An Introduction to Shi'i Islam, by Moojan Momen

Who are the Christians of the Middle East?, by B.J. Bailey and J.M. Bailey

Course supplement including excerpts from Marshall Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, and The Jews of Arab Lands, Norman Stillman.

 

Grading & Requirements

4 reading response papers: 15% each

1 field trip report: 10%

attendance: 15%

class participation: 15%

R S 358 • Islamic Law

43640 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm BEN 1.122
(also listed as ARA 372, ISL 340, MES 328, WGS 340 )
show description

From the beginnings of Islam in the 7th century until today, observant Muslims have sought to live their lives in accordance with God's law, or shariah. This writing-intensive, upper-division course is designed to give students a foundation in the substantive teachings of the shariah, which comprises not only what we normally think of as law, but also ethics and etiquette. Specific areas of coverage include the following: rules of ritual worship, ethical principles, etiquette, family and personal status law, criminal law, economic and contract law, constitutional and international law. Although bulk of the course will concern classical Islamic law, we will take time out to discuss issues of contemporary concern as well, such as gender equity, human rights, medical ethics, and warfare. Readings will be in both secondary literature and primary texts (in translation). This course has no prerequisites, but will assume a basic working knowledge of Islam.

Flags: Writing

 

Texts

To be provided by instructor. 

 

Grading

To be provided by instructor. 

R S 358 • Classical Islamic Studies

44325 • Spring 2011
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm GAR 3.116
(also listed as ARA 372, C L 323, ISL 340, MES 321K )
show description

Course Description

This writing-intensive, upper-division course will provide an overview of the core religious disciplines of classical Islam, as well as a foundation in the methodologies of each discipline for those students interested in further study of any one of them. In this course, we will focus on the following four religious disciplines: Qur'anic exegesis ("tafsir"); critique of the Prophetic reports ("hadith"); theology ("kalam"); and law ("fiqh"). Readings will be in both secondary and primary texts (all in translation). Writing components will include short weekly essays and a final project. This course will assume a basic knowledge of Islam, such as is provided by the Introduction to Islam course (NOTE: This course carries a writing flag).

 

Texts

An Introduction to the Sciences of the Qur'an Hadith Literature: Its Origin, Development and Special Features The Cambridge Companion to Classical Islamic Theology A History of Islamic Legal Theories

 

Grading and Requirements

Attendance 14%

Class participation 14%

6 response papers 12% each

R S 358 • Religions Of The Middle East

44330 • Spring 2011
Meets TTH 930am-1100am WAG 101
(also listed as ISL 340, MES 322K )
show description

What are the differences between Sunni and Shii Muslims?  How is Christianity in Egypt different from Christianity in the U.S.?  How is Judaism practiced in Morocco?  Who are the Druze, and what do Zoroastrians believe?  This course seeks to answer some of these questions.  We will study the many and diverse religious communities of the contemporary Middle East, focusing on cosmology and mythology, doctrines and beliefs, liturgy and devotional practices, moral law and ethics, and scriptural tradition.  We will also study history and culture insofar as these inform and/or reflect religious beliefs and values. A key objective of the course will be to utilize comparative and anthropological approaches in order to explore the particularities of religion in the Middle Eastern context.

 

Texts:

Islam in the Middle East: A Living Tradition, by G. P. Makris;

An Introduction to Shi`i Islam, by Moojan Momen

Who are the Christians of the Middle East?, by B. J. Bailey and J. M. Bailey

Course supplement including excerpts from Marshall Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, and The Jews of Arab Lands, Norman Stillman.

 

Grading:

4 reading response papers (15% each), 1 field trip report (10%), attendance (15%) and class participation (15%)

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