Death of historian Mohammed Arkoun

Death of historian Mohammed Arkoun

Islamologist and historian Mohammed arkoun, who died Tuesday, September 14, was a supporter of interreligious dialogue, and between "the Muslim world" and "the Western world". He put back to back the prejudices that one and the other throw in the face, and did not make only friends. He was also a defender of secularism, while insisting on the need to take into account the specificity of each culture. Here too his position divides ...

In the context of tensions and incomprehension about Islam following September 11, 2001, and questions on the place of Islam in France, he decided to act in the debate through conferences, but above all by directing the encyclopedic History of Islam and Muslims in France from the Middle Ages to the present day. Beyond the great intellectual and historian, it is therefore also the man of dialogue and commitment who will be lacking in today's increasingly exacerbated and simplistic debates.

He is also one of the initiators of the creation of the Civic Center for the Study of Religious Fact (CCEFR) of Montreuil, with Jean-Pierre Brard and Françoise Micheau.

The CCEFR paid tribute to him on September 16, through the voice of Henri Pena-Ruiz (who read Aragon's poem "La rose et le mignon") and Françoise Micheau ("Mohammed Arkoun was a critical thinker, pedagogue tireless").

The Institut du Monde Arabe will also pay tribute to him on September 27, at 6.30 p.m.

Born in 1928 in Algeria, Mohammed Arkoun studied in Oran, then Algiers, before joining the Sorbonne with the support of Louis Massignon. He graduated in Arabic language and literature in 1956. After teaching in Strasbourg and at the Lycée Voltaire in Paris, he returned to the Sorbonne where he taught the history of Islamic thought. Developing the concept of "applied Islamology" (influenced by anthropology), Mohammed Arkoun is internationally recognized and will teach as far as the United States. In 1993, he was professor emeritus at the Sorbonne, and in 1996 an officer of the Legion of Honor.

Non-exhaustive bibliography

- Islam and Muslims in France from the Middle Ages to the present day (dir), Albin Michel, 2006.

- Humanism and Islam. Fights and proposals, Vrin, 2006.

- Essays on Islamic Thought, 1st ed. Maisonneuve & Larose, 1973; 2nd ed. 1984.

- Religion and Secularism: A Secular Approach to Islam, L'Arbrelle, Thomas More Center, 1989.

- Islam, religion and society, ed. Deer, 1982.

See also a site with a lot of open access documents here.

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