About


Dr. Younus Y. Mirza is an Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies at Allegheny College.  He defended his dissertation in Arabic and Islamic Studies from Georgetown University in 2012 and was awarded a Post Doc in Religious Studies at Millsaps College in 2012-13.  His dissertation was on the influential medieval historian and qur’anic exegete Ibn Kathir (d. 1373) whose works have been appropriated by modern Islamic movements.    His current research focuses on the relationship between the Bible and the Qur’an and the shared stories between them. He is a co-author of the book The Bible and the Qur’an: Biblical Figures in the Islamic Tradition and has published in various journals such as the Journal of the American Academy of Religion (JAAR), the Journal of Qur’anic Studies (JQS) and Islam Christian-Muslim Relations. He teaches courses on the Qur’an, Islamic Movements, Biblical and Qur’anic Prophets, Marriage and Sexuality in Islam and Islam and Other Religions.  His writings can be accessed here.

 


Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies
Allegheny College, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Meadville, PA,
Fall 2013 – Present

Courses Taught: Introduction to Islam, the Qur’an, Islam and Other Religions, Marriage and Sexuality in Islam, Modern Islamic Movements and Islam in America

Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Religious Studies
Millsaps College, Department of Religious Studies, Jackson, MS, Fall 2012 – Spring 2013

Courses Taught: Modern Islamic Movements, Jesus in the Qur’an: The Reception of Biblical Literature in the Islamic Tradition, Muhammad Comes to America: The History of Islam in the United States

Adjunct Professor of Islamic History, Georgetown University,  June 2012

Course Taught: Introduction to the Islamic World; Organized a guest lecturer series

Arabic Teaching Assistant, Georgetown University, September 2006- May 2007, September  2008 – December 2010

Courses: intensive beginning and intermediate Arabic


 PhD, Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies, Georgetown University, May 2012

Dissertation Topic: Ibn Kathir (d. 1373): His Intellectual Circle, Major Works and Qur’anic Exegesis

Coursework Included: Prophetic Reports, Arabic Biographical Dictionaries, Arabic Grammatical Theory, Islamic Sectarianism, Classical Arabic Prose and Poetry, Islam & Modernity, Islamic Theology

Graduated with Distinction, Center for Contemporary Arab Studies Arabic Language Scholarship, University of Qatar, , 2005-2006

Master of Arts with distinction in Arab Studies, Culture and Society, Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service May 2005

Coursework Includes: Islamic Movements, Qur’anic Exegesis, Sufism, Contemporary Muslim Intellectuals, Qur’an and History, Arab Culture and Society

Bachelors of Science in Foreign Service, cum laude in Culture and Politics, Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service May 2005
with a Certificate in Islam and Muslim-Christian Understanding

Presidential Scholar, Elliot School of Foreign Service, George Washington University, 2000-2001


COLLABORATIVE PROJECTS

American Academy of Religion (AAR) Collaborative International Research Grant 2018

Invited to join NetVUE working group on Vocational Exploration in Multi-Faith Contexts,  August 1st 2016 – 2018

Selected Participant, Interfaith Understanding Teaching Workshop at DePaul University organized by the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), August 2014


CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS

“Tafsir Ibn Kathir as a Modern Tafsir: How Ahmad Shakir Helped Make Tafsir Ibn Kathir into the New Baydawi.” American Academy of Religion (AAR) 2016, November 20th, San Antonio,TX.

“’The Slave Woman Will Give Birth to Her Master’: Ibn Rajab’s Refutation of the Sale of the Umm al-Walad.” American Academy of Religion (AAR) 2015, November 22nd, Atlanta, GA.

“The Disciples as Companions: Ibn Taymiyya’s Refutation of the Exegetical Argument that the Messengers (rusul) in Surat Ya Sin are the Disciples of Jesus.” British Association of Islamic Studies, 2015, 14 April, London.

“Modern Muslim Anti-Semitism and the Rise of the Salafi Movement.” Association of Jewish Studies, 2014 December 15th, Baltimore, MD.

“Modern Muslim Intertextuality: the Case of Ibn Taymiyya.” American Academy of Religion (AAR) and Society of Biblical Literature 2014, November 24th, San Diego, CA.

“Abandoning ‘Traditionalism’: Marshall Hodgson’s Attempt to Redefine Islamic ‘Orthodoxy.’ University of Chicago Islamicate Conference , 2014, October 17th -18th, Chicago, IL.

“Mistrusting the Bible: Ibn Taymiyya’s (d. 1328) Views of Biblical Distortion and Altercation (Tahrif).” American Historical Association Conference, 2014, January 4, Washington, DC.

“Abridging the Isra’iliyyat: Shaykh Ahmad Shakir’s Summary of Tafsir Ibn Kathir.” International Qur’an Studies Association (IQSA) and Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) Conference, 2013, November 24, Baltimore, MD.

“Ibn Kathir’s Treatise on the Umm al-Walad.” Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Conference 2013, October 19, New Orleans, LA.

“Contemplating the Qur’an Conference.” (Conference Organizer), Howard University School of Divinity 2013, March 25-26, Washington, D.C.

“Abridging the Isra’iliyyat: Shaykh Ahmad Shakir’s Summary of Tafsir Ibn Kathir.” Contemplating the Qur’an Conference, Howard University School of Divinity 2013, March 25, Washington, D.C.

“How Ishmael Became the Sacrifice of Abraham: Ibn Taymiyya’s Engagement with the Hebrew Bible.”  American Academy of Religion (AAR) and Society of Biblical Literature 2012 (SBL), November 20, Chicago,IL.

“How Ishmael Became the Sacrifice of Abraham: The Modern Dominance of Ibn Taymiyya’s Qur’anic Hermeneutic.” Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations Graduate Student Symposium 2012, March 5, Toronto, Ontario.

“How Ishmael Became the Sacrifice of Abraham: The Modern Dominance of Ibn Taymiyya’s Qur’anic Hermeneutic.” Faculty of Foreign Languages and Linguistics Dissertation Forum 2012, February 22, Washington, D.C.

“Quranic Exegesis Outside the Classical Tafsir Genre.” (Panel Organizer) American Academy of Religion (AAR) Conference 2011, November 20, San Francisco, USA

“Ibn Taymiyya as a Qur’anic Exegete.” American Academy of Religion (AAR) Conference 2011, November 20, San Francisco, USA

“Ibn Kathir: Modern Reception and Medieval Hermeneutics.” American Academy of Religion (AAR) Conference 2009, November 7, Montreal, Canada.

“Challenging the Term Immigrant Muslim.” Yale Critical Islamic Reflection (CIR) Conference 2009, April 11, New Haven, CT.

“The Qur’anic Exegesis of Ibn Kathir.” Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Conference 2009, November 22, Boston, USA.

“Islamic Thought and Revival in the 18th and 19th Centuries.” (Panel Organizer) Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Conference 2008, November 23, Washington, DC.

“Prohibition of Grave Worship in 18th Century Islamic thought.” Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Conference 2008, November 23, Washington, DC.

“The Appropriation of Ibn Taymiyya in the Modern Wahabi Polemic of Sufism,” Association of Muslim Social Scientist (AMSS) Conference 2006, October 28, Hartford, Connecticut.

“Evaluating al-Qaeda’s Frame of Collective Action,” Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Conference 2005, November 21, Washington, DC.


LECTURES AND TALKS

“‘The Slave Woman Will Give Birth to Her Master’: How ISIS Engages the Islamic Tradition to Justify Sexual Slavery.” Michigan State University. 2016, April 16th.

“How Ishmael Became the Sacrifice of Abraham.” Jewish Museum of Berlin. 2015, September 4th.

“The Current State of Qur’anic Studies.” International University of Sarajevo. 2015, August 10th.

“Finding a New Place.” Allegheny College Baccalaureate Service. 2014, May 9th, Meadville, PA.

“How to Use Clicker’s In Your Classroom.” Allegheny College Teaching with Technology Session. 2014, April 15th, Meadville, PA.

“Shaykh Ahmad Shakir and the Rise of Tafsir Ibn Kathir.” International Institute of Islamic Thought. 2013, January 4th, Herndon, VA.

“Al-Qaeda in Today’s World.” Millsaps College. 2012, November 5th, Jackson, MS.

“Sufism.” Millsaps College. 2012, October 24th, Jackson, MS.

“Common Misconceptions of Islamic Law.” Georgetown Law School.  2011, April 14, Washington DC.

“Methodology of Prophetic Reports.” Northern Virginia Community College. 2009, March 3, Alexandria, VA.

“Methodology of Prophetic Reports.” Northern Virginia Community College. 2008, February 26, Alexandria, VA.


PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

Adviser to the Study of Religion Across Civilizations (SORAC) Morocco-US Exchange Program, 2014 – Present

Faculty Advisory Board Member, America’s Unofficial Ambassadors, 2014 – Present

Middle East Studies Association (MESA), 2005 – Present

American Academy of Religion (AAR), 2006 – Present

Society of Biblical Literature (SBL), 2011 – Present

Association of Jewish Studies, 2014 – Present


 

FOREIGN LANGUAGES

Arabic (fluent)
English (fluent)
French (reading)
German (reading)
Persian (intermediate)
Urdu (listening)

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