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Undergraduate Module Descriptor

ARA2146: Islamic Theological Traditions

This module descriptor refers to the 2019/0 academic year.

Module Aims

This module is designed to provide through the study of translated texts an in-depth understanding of the main scholastic disciplines of Islam relating to theology, namely usul al-din, usul al-fiqh and systematic theology (kalam). From the starting-point of an exploration of the competing theories for the early development of Islamic scholarship, the history of the main genres of these disciplines will then be considered. Representative texts of these genres in translation, which are considered as key works in their own traditions, will be read and analysed in class, in order to gain a 'first-hand' experience of their form and content, and thus to gain an insight into the milieux which produced them, the epistemological basis of the disciplines, the structure of arguments and the main foci of debates in changing historical settings.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here – you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. Understand the characteristics of the main genres of Islamic scholarship, the prominent authors, the topics with which their works are concerned, and the competing academic approaches to interpreting them.
2. analyse and contextualise primary texts in translation from the different genres of theological production in Islam
Discipline-Specific Skills3. Understand a religious and intellectual culture through the genres of its literary output,.
4. Compare this first-hand exposure to the academic descriptions in recent scholarship, in order to identify their relevant strengths and shortcomings.
Personal and Key Skills5. Demonstrate transferable skills in analysis and interpretation, as well as in evaluating arguments
6. assess every approach from its own methodological basis and assumptions
7. Demonstrate the ability to find, digest, select and organise material to produce a coherent and reasoned argument in time to meet deadlines.
8. demonstrate the ability to work independently, within a limited time frame, and without access to external sources, to complete a specified task.