Listing of Events

8 January

Combating Terrorism: Lessons from Iraq

Iraq has cleared ISIS from its territory, but many foreign terrorist fighters have returned to their countries including about 400 to the UK.  The organisation also has sleeping cells in more than 50 countries in the world. Military defeat by itself is not enough to eliminate the danger these terrorists pose to humanity at large. The decisive battle against them is ideological and the responsibility primarily lies on the Muslims themselves.

The speaker will discuss the roots and causes that give rise to radicalism, violence and terrorism including political, economic and social grievances and teaching extremism in the name of religion.

Speaker: Dr Hussain Al-Shahristani

Chair: Dr. J. Simon Rofe

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre, SOAS  University

Time: 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM

Register on: Eventbrite

Contact email:

8 – 12 January

Persian Calligraphy, Nasta’liq Script

By Keramat Fathinia

This ten-week exercise-based Persian calligraphy course is a continuation of a previous course suitable for all levels. It is based on a one-to-one teaching method, so everyone will be given the instructions based on their own level and previous experience.

Materials and tools are not included in the course fee, but you will be advised where to get them from.

Venue: London Middle East Institute, MBI Al Jaber Building, 21 Russell Square
Time: 6:30 PM 8:30 PM

Fees: £250. There will be a small additional charge of between £10 and £20 for materials and tools.

To register: visit the SOAS Online Store.

Contact email:

Contact Tel: 020 7898 4330/4490


10 January

The Hadassah and Daniel Khalili Memorial Lecture in Islamic Art and Culture

Dr Simon Rettig, Assistant Curator of Islamic Art, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: Khalili Lecture Theatre (KLT)

Time: 7:00 PM 8:00 PM

Organiser: Rosalind Wade Haddon

Contact email:

Contact Tel: 07714087480


12 January

The Power of Belief: Can religion be separated from politics?

Mahatma Gandhi said: “Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is.’ This panel discussion will interrogate this notion, with reference to 40,000 years of religious history, Enlightenment ideals of secular governance, and a forward-facing look at how global politics might evolve to better serve humans’ spiritual needs.

Chaired by: BBC religious affairs correspondent Martin Bashir.

Venue: BP Lecture Theatre, British Museum

Time: 6.30 PM – 8.00 PM

Fee: £10 – Members/Concessions £8

More info:


13 January

Holistic Healing

There have been many advances in medicine in the last decade, and without a doubt more is yet to come. But what is Prophetic medicine and what does it really mean?  We take a look back in history and present to you: ‘Holistic Healing’, an alternative view to conventional medicine. It promises to be an unforgettable night of inspirational talks, uplifting spoken word artists and breathtaking recitation of the Holy Qur’an. Join us for an enlightening evening on prophetic medicine, shedding light on the Gaza healthcare crisis and raising money in aid of Palestinian refugees.

Venue: The Atrium London, 124-126 Cheshire St, London E2 6EJ

Time: 5.30 PM – 10.00 PM

Fee: £25 – £30

More info:


15 January

The Fourth International Conference on Shi‘i Studies 2018 (5 – 6 May 2018)


The Islamic College would like to invite abstracts to be submitted for its fourth conference specialising in the growing field of Shi‘i studies. This conference will provide a broad platform for scholars in Shi‘i studies to present their latest research. Papers are welcome on any aspect of Shi‘i studies.

Abstract submission deadline: 15th January 2018

Deadline for completed papers: 2nd April 2018

Suggested topics:

Please email abstracts to


The history of Islamic piety before Sufism

 Christoph Melchert, University of Oxford

Organiser: Dr. Ceyda Karamursel

Venue: Paul Webley Wing (Senate House) Room: WLT

Time: 5:00 PM 7:00 PM


From 19 January

 The Gap Between Us

 This is the first UK solo exhibition by artist and filmmaker Basma Alsharif, featuring three key works from different periods of the artist’s practice. This exhibition’s central work will be Ouroboros (2017) Alsharif’s first feature length film, screened here in a gallery context for the first time.

Venue: The Mosaic Rooms, Tower House, 226 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SW

More info:


20 January

Gangstas’ Paradise

 We often talk about how divided our society is. We often talk about unification.  The first way to unite our communities is to come together and try to solve the issues plaguing our communities.  Join us for an evening of inspiration where a range of topics will be discussed including: struggles of reverts, Tackling Gangs & Violence, Reforming ex – prisoners, Gangs, Bad Friends & Choosing Friends Wisely.

Venue: Rio Grande, 144 Woodhead Rd, Bradford BD7 1PD

Time: 5.30 PM – 10.00 PM

Fee: £12

More info:


Our Mosques Our Future

A one- day conference organised by the Muslim Council of Britain.  The first mosque in history – the Prophetic Mosque in the city of Medina – was a space where people came together not only in ritual worship but also as families and as a community. It played a vital role in interfaith work, charity and education.

Today there are an estimated 1,500 mosques in Britain. British Muslim communities must ask themselves:  Are our mosques today failing to follow the Prophetic model?  How many are truly providing services beyond just a prayer space? And in an increasingly challenging environment, how is the role of the mosque in 21st century Britain changing?

Join us for an action-packed day on 20th January 2018 featuring TED-style talks, keynote speeches and interactive workshops exploring the challenges and opportunities for mosques in Britain today.

Venue: To Be Confirmed

Time: 9.00 AM – 6.00 PM

Fee: £16.50 – £32.44

More info:



23 January

Ask a Rabbi/Ask a Mufti: Rethinking Religious Authority in Judaism and Islam

This workshop is an innovative attempt to create a conversation between anthropological  and socio-legal perspectives regarding religious authority in everyday Judaism and Islam. By bringing together a broad range of scholars we will begin an inter-disciplinary dialogue about religious authority. During this workshop we will identify common core principles and encourage cross-cultural perspectives as we address the similar and different historical, social, cultural and political factors that have created two different models of religious authority.

Venue: Woolf Institute, Madingley Road, Cambridge, CB3 0UB

Time: 10.30 AM – 2.00 PM

Fee: Free, but booking is essential

More info:


25 January

Forbidden Fruit: Translating the Qur’an in early modern Europe

The Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded Christian-Muslim Relations project team at the University of Birmingham warmly invite you to its first public lecture. In early modern Europe the Qur’an was the victim of prejudice and the beneficiary of curiosity. The lecture explores the various reasons for translating it and the obstacles the translators encountered when having their translations published.  The lecture will be followed by a reception and a launch of the latest Christian-Muslim Relations project publication.

Speaker: Professor Alastair Hamilton (School of Advanced Study, University of London)

Venue: Arts Building Main Lecture Theatre (Room 120), University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, B15 2TT

Time: 4.30 PM – 6.00 PM

Fee: Free, but registration required.

More info:

26 January

Persian kingship after Alexander the Great

 A 45-minute gallery talk by Alexandra Magub at British Museum. Suitable for all levels of knowledge.

Venue: Room 68, British Museum, Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG

Time: 1.15 PM – 2.00 PM

Fee: Free, drop in.

26 – 28 January

The Art of Differing – Sisters’ Retreat

This course is presented with the premise that the existence of differences seems to be an unavoidable phenomenon, but intends to establish that Islam provides guidelines to deal with conflicting views. The course explores whether we can avoid or lessen differences and how we can be united with the presence of differences. Learn how to identify an acceptable difference from one that is illegitimate. The course analyses the underlying causes that lead to differing and discusses the guidelines that rank differences into those that are major or minor and how we can practically deal with them. The course also responds to the question, what should our stance be concerning shadh (unusual/illegitimate) opinions even if they be from scholars?

Organisers: Sabeel Retreats & Seminars

Venue: London TBC

Fee: £75

More info:

2 February

Call for Papers: Annual Palestine Research Seminar

For the sixth year running, the Centre for Palestine Studies at SOAS will host a one-day research seminar series aimed at providing a platform for PhD students working on Palestine or Palestine-related issues to present their projects and discuss theoretical and research issues. The series will comprise three sessions each of which will put into conversation three researchers and a discussant to talk about their work.

Could you kindly send a brief (300-word) abstract and title for your paper to Dina Matar (CPS advisory board member) at by 8 January 2018.

The list of speakers and discussants will be announced on 10 January 2018.

 Organiser: Centre for Palestine Studies and Centre for Media Studies

Venue: MBI Al Jaber Building, 21 Russell Square Room: MBI Al Jaber Seminar Room

Time: 10:30 AM 6:00 PM

Contact email:

Contact Tel: 020 7898 4330

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