29 October 2018


Islam and the Future of Tolerance

Maajid Nawaz
writer, columnist and founding chairman of the counter-extremism organization Quilliam

Mon 29 October, 20:00
Franz Palm Lecture Hall, Tongersestraat 53

After publicly clashing in a debate over the concept of Islamic reform in the Muslim world, prominent atheist philosopher Sam Harris and Islamist-turned-liberal-Muslim Maajid Nawaz reconnected several years later in an attempt at honest dialogue.

Sam and Maajid explored their real or imagined divides by clearly and rationally dissecting their disagreements. Over the course of their discussions, they tackled troubling passages from the Quran, the importance of the precision of language and terms (such as ‘Jihadism’, ‘Islamists’, and “radical,”) and the difficulty of finding helpful and honest responses in a fraught political terrain. The result was a book, and then a film, both called Islam and the Future of Tolerance.

Ultimately, this unlikely collaboration sheds light on the many confusions that afflict the public conversation about Islam. It emphasises how the virtues of open dialogue can help foster both understanding and tolerance in an increasingly polarised world.

In this lecture, Maajid Nawaz will be bringing that dialogue to the Netherlands.

More inforation:
Maajid Nawaz

Maajid’s work is informed by years spent in his youth as a leadership member of a global Islamist group, and his gradual transformation towards liberal democratic values. Having served four years as an Amnesty International adopted ‘prisoner of conscience’ in Egypt, Maajid is now a leading critic of his former Islamist ideological dogma, while remaining a secular liberal Muslim. Maajid encourages the reform of Islam today, inclusive citizenship-based participation of Muslims in their respective countries. He seeks to synergise a respect for human rights with the civic liberal imperative to defend those in danger of being stigmatised by extremists. His autobiographical account of his life story Radical has been released in the UK and US, as has his second co-authored book Islam and the Future of Tolerance.

Maajid is an Honorary Associate of the UK’s National Secular Society. He writes for papers like the Daily Beast, the Jewish News, the London Times, New York Times and Wall Street Journal, among others.

Maajid, holds a BA (Hons) from SOAS in Arabic and Law and an MSc in Political Theory from the London School of Economics (LSE).

The Tans Lecture is organised every year to honour Dr. J. Tans (1912-1993), the founding father of Maastricht University.

Registration is necessary
Because of security, we can only allow attendees who have registered. Bags and liquids are not allowed inside the lecture room. There will be a security check at the doors. You must identify yourself by showing a valid identity document (passport / identity card). People who do not have a valid ID will not be admitted. Please be aware that we expect a long waiting time, due to security screenings, so make sure you arrive one hour before the start.