Prospects for a Feminist Islam

Room G03 (Lecture Theatre 1) - Alan Walter Building
Tuesday 20 September 2022 (17:00-18:30)

Islamic Philosophy of Religion Public Lecture

The Global Philosophy of Religion Public Lecture Series 

Dr Fatema Amijee


Can Muslim values be reconciled with a feminist outlook? The question is pressing on both an individual level—for Muslim feminists—and on a political level—for the project of making Islamic practice compatible with the ideals of a just and liberal society. A version of this question arises specifically for the central Muslim text, the Quran: Can the message of the Quran be reconciled with a feminist outlook? There have, broadly speaking, been two approaches to this more specific question. I argue that both are inadequate. I then develop a novel approach to reconciliation that does not threaten the objective and universal normative force Muslims attribute to the Quran. My approach also demonstrates how the Quran provides the groundwork for developing an Islamic virtue ethics.


I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the University of British Columbia.
​My main research interests lie in Metaphysics, Modern Philosophy, Feminist Philosophy (particularly as it relates to Islam) and the History of Analytic Philosophy (esp. Frege, Russell, and early Wittgenstein).
A primary focus of my work is the Principle of Sufficient Reason (roughly: 'Everything has an explanation'). The principle was a prime tenet of early modern rationalism, and thus much of my work in the history of early modern philosophy concerns metaphysical themes in Leibniz, Spinoza, Du Châtelet, and other early modern rationalists. I also spend a lot of my time thinking about the Principle of Sufficient Reason as a thesis within contemporary metaphysics. Questions I have investigated include: How should we understand the PSR, in light of recent developments in metaphysics? What is the best argument for the principle? And is a commitment to the PSR consistent with a commitment to a fundamental level of reality?

I've also written and presented on a range of other topics, including: depatriarchalizing strategies in Quranic interpretation; Kant's transcendental idealism; norms for belief; the metaphysics of numerical identity; Russell's theory of knowledge; metaphysical emergence; and methodology in metaphysics. 

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