Montana State University

Islamic scholar to speak on future of Islam-West relations Feb. 16 at MSU

January 31, 2011

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Islamic scholar John Esposito will speak on the future of Islam and Islam-West relations, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 16, in Montana State University's Strand Union Ballrooms.

Esposito is the founding director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding in the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

A leading Islamic scholar, Esposito will address current issues facing Islam today, including Western perceptions of Islam and prospects for reform within Islamic societies.

Esposito has served as a consultant to the U.S. Department of State and other government agencies, Middle Eastern, European and Asian governments and corporations, universities, and the media worldwide. He is a former president of the Middle East Studies Association of North America and the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies, vice chair of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy, and member of the World Economic Forum's Council of 100 Leaders. Currently, Esposito is president elect (2013) of the American Academy of Religion and a member of the E. C. European Network of Experts on De-Radicalisation and the board of C-1 World Dialogue and an ambassador for the U.N. Alliance of Civilizations.

Esposito is the recipient of the American Academy of Religion's 2005 Martin E. Marty Award for the Public Understanding of Religion and of Pakistan's Quaid-i-Azzam Award for Outstanding Contributions in Islamic Studies and the School of Foreign Service and Georgetown University Award for Outstanding Teaching.

The author of 35 books and numerous articles about Islam, Esposito's latest book is "The Future of Islam," published in 2010. A book signing will follow the lecture.

Esposito's lecture is sponsored by MSU's Diversity Awareness Office, the Office of the President, the Muslim Student Association, Lutheran Campus Ministries, the Office of Student Activities, the Office of International Programs, Unitarian Universalists Fellowship, Social Justice Team at United Methodist Church, Montana Women For is there more to this organization? and the Gallatin Valley Interfaith Alliance.

Phenocia Bauerle (406) 994-6507, phenocia.bauerle@montana.edu