Dr Ali-Reza Bhojani

Dr Ali-Reza Bhojani

Department of Theology and Religion
Teaching Fellow in Islamic Ethics and Theology

Contact details

I study and teach Islamic ethics, theology and legal theory bringing together multi-disciplinary approaches to an engagement with Islamic intellectual traditions and how they relate to contemporary questions regarding religion and public life.


  • PhD in Islamic Legal theory, Institute for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, Durham University
  • MA in Research Methods (International Relations and Politics), Durham University
  • Hawza Programme (Arabic and Islamic Studies), Al-Mahdi Institute
  • BSc (hons) in Optometry, Bradford University


After completing an undergraduate degree and professional qualifications in Optometry, I began my engagement with the Islamic Intellectual traditions through four years of study at the Al-Mahdi Institute, graduating from its Hawza programme in 2008. I then moved to Durham University for 1+3 ESRC funded doctoral programme with the Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World (CASAW). I was awarded a distinction for an MA in Research Methods (International Relations and Politics) and graduated from the doctoral programme at the Institute for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies in 2014. The thesis was published as Moral Rationalism and Sharī‛a (Routledge, 2015). I have since held academic posts at the Al-Mahdi Institute, the Markfield Institute of Higher Education, the University of Nottingham and the University of Oxford. 



I contribute to teaching on ‘Understanding and Countering Radical Islamic thought and Practice’, ‘Global Islam’, ‘The Human Condition’,  and ‘Introduction to Islam’


I am currently programme lead for the MA in Islamic Studies, convening the modules on ‘Approaches to the Study of Islam’ and ‘Critical Thinkers of Modernity, Science, Society and Religion’.

Postgraduate supervision

I welcome proposals for research across the diversity of approaches to Islamic ethics and theology, whether they start from within Islamic intellectual traditions, the lived practice of Muslims or questions at the interface of religions and society.

Particularly, I welcome proposals that seek to engage with questions of theology, philosophy and ethics through the lens of  uṣūl al-fiqh as well as projects which seek to study uṣūl al-fiqh more broadly.


My research maintains a particular focus on Modern Twelver Shī ͑ī legal theory and its value as a discourse for exploring questions across philosophy and theology, in particular ethics, epistemology and hermeneutics. I also have a developing interest in anthropology. Collaborations with experienced ethnographers has pushed me to consider more carefully how lived practice relates to, and informs, philosophical and theological deliberations. This work has primarily been considering how the lived practice of shari'a can inform new questions in the study of, and constructive thinking within, Islamic legal theory.