Past Events

9 Dec’14 – Developing A Philosophy of Pluralism


Please click here to register.  Registration starts at 2.00 PM

Penang Institute, the public policy think tank of the Penang state government is proud to host a Forum entitled “Developing A Philosophy of Pluralism” to be held on 9th December 2014, 2 – pm at Hall Theatre 2, Level 5, Wawasan Open University. The lecture will be delivered by none other than Professor Ebrahim Moosa, Professor of Islamic Studies in the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and in Notre Dame’s Department of History, USA.

The subject of demonization of late and intentionally misunderstood by the authorities, the concept of pluralism is by no means a threat to any religion. If anything, plurality of culture and religion is a way of life in multicultural Malaysia.

Diversity is not only a cause for celebration but also introspection, because the existence of pluralism requires us to accept that there are a multitude of perspectives and opinions out there that we can learn from. In other words, the acceptance of pluralism demands intellectual humility and engenders critical thinking, especially the ability to question one’s own frame of reference.

Unfortunately in Malaysia, the easy way out is chosen – the path of dogmatism and unquestioning obedience to whatever is deemed appropriate by the authorities. Preying on the general population’s insecurities and stretching the meaning of “national security” to its limits, various religious, national and ethnical groups have been outlawed and their points of view deemed heretical.

Join us as Professor Ebrahim Moosa expounds on the concept of pluralism and the need to develop and preserve such a philosophy that accords equal respect, compassion and understanding of diversity.

About the Speaker

Prof. Ebrahim Moosa is the Professor of Islamic Studies in the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and in Notre Dame’s Department of History. Born in South Africa, Prof. Moosa earned his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Cape Town. Prior to that he earned a degree in Islamic and Arabic studies from Darul Ulum Nadwatul `Ulama in Lucknow, India. He also has a BA degree from Kanpur University and a postgraduate diploma in journalism from the City University in London.

Prof. Moosa co-directs with Scott Appleby, Contending Modernities, the global research and education initiative examining the interaction among Catholic, Muslim, and other religious and secular forces in the world. He came to Notre Dame in the fall of 2014 from Duke University, where he taught in the Department of Religious Studies for 13 years.

Prof. Moosa’s interests span both classical and modern Islamic thought with a special focus on Islamic law, history, ethics and theology. He is the author of Ghazali and the Poetics of Imagination, winner of the American Academy of Religion’s Best First Book in the History of Religions (2006) and editor of the last manuscript of the late Professor Fazlur Rahman, Revival and Reform in Islam: A Study of Islamic Fundamentalism.

In 2005, Prof. Moosa was named a Carnegie Scholar to pursue research on Islamic seminaries of South Asia. His next book, What Is a Madrasa? is forthcoming from the University of North Carolina Press.

His publications include the forthcoming co-edited book The African Renaissance and the Afro-Arab Spring (Georgetown University Press 2015);Islam in the Modern World (Routledge 2014) and Muslim Family Law in Sub-Saharan Africa: Colonial Legacies and Post-Colonial Challenges, (Amsterdam University Press, Spring, 2010).


2.00-2.30 pm: Registration

2.30-2.45 pm: Welcoming speech by YB Zairil Khir Johari

2.45-2.55 pm: Speech by moderator, Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa

2.55-3.30 pm: Lecture by Prof Ebrahim Moosa

3.30-4.30 pm: Question & Answer

4.30-5.00 pm: Tea

Admission is FREE for ALL.

Due to limited seating for the forum we require your kind assistance to reserve your participation as soon as possible. Please click here to register.

For further enquiries, please contact Ms Kanchana  at 04- 228 3306 ext 204.