Guidelines for the final essay: Objectives: While preparing this assignment you are meant to 1) learn more about the topic you are interested in by looking into academic sources, 2) practice academic essay writing and develop your style and rhetoric, 3) practice analytic observation and critical thinking, 4) develop research skills, 5) create bibliography, 6) practice correct citation, and finally 7) how not to plagiarize. The content: The topic that you choose should be related to our course material and fall under one of the following categories: 1) History of Islam 2) Life of the Prophet 3) Early Muslim society 4) Conquests beyond Arabia 5)Islamic doctrines and rituals 6)Intellectual or spiritual traditions 6) Religious texts and interpretation 7)Islam and modernity 8)Islam and politics 9)comparative study. Suggested topics: These are only samples and you can think of other topics than what is suggested here as long as they fall under one of the above categories. It is also advised that you narrow down on the topics below as some are still too general. The more specific your topic, the more exact your treatment of it shall be. Please don‟t hesitate to share new topics on the Moodle (discussion board) and receive peer feedbacks. Islam and Christianity: Historical and doctrinal comparison Islam and Judaism: interrelations and conflicts Islam and the Abrahamic legacy The first Islamic city and the Constitution of Medina Islam in Spain The Caliphate system History of Shi‟i/Sunni schism The political implications of sectarian conflicts Articles of faith: Daily prayers Fasting Pilgrimage to Mecca Jihad Hadith scholarship: canonical versus forge
Quranic exegesis and interpretative approache Early wars Rationalism in Islam Conflicts and confluence between theology and philosophy Ghazzali against Ibn Sina Early Sufism The Fatimids The Ottomans The Safavids Twelver Shi‟ism Apocalyptic traditions in Islam Fundamentalism Muslim Brotherhood Reformist movements in...
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