ICAR Features Fulbright Scholar at Brown Bag Lecture

Posted: February 4, 2004 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Fran Rensbarger

Nariman Gasimzada, a Fulbright Exchange Visiting Scholar conducting his research at Georgetown University, will speak on challenges facing Muslims in Soviet republics as they move from an atheistic society to a pluralistic one. His presentation is the brown bag lecture tomorrow at noon at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR).

Gasimzada, from the Republic of Azerbaijan, will speak on “Islam and the State: Searching for and Shaping New Models in Former Soviet Republics with a Muslim Majority.” His working paper on the subject, published by the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University, contrasts religious processes in other states with Muslim majorities–where institutionalization of Islam has deep historical roots–with Islam in post-Soviet countries–where it could only exist at a social level during nearly 70 years of atheistic ideology. “After the Soviet Union collapsed, we nevertheless witnessed that the religious factor started to affect, to a significant degree, the formation of various political ideas and models, claiming to have a certain role in social life,” he writes.

Gasimzada is the chairman of Azerbaijan Center for Religion and Democracy, a nongovernmental organization, and the author of a Koran translation into Azeri, as well as a series of studies on Islamic issues.

The entire community is invited to the ICAR brown bag lectures, a series of informal presentations on research and practice of conflict resolution. Gasimzada will present his 45-minute talk in the ICAR Main Conference Room, A401, 4260 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax. For more information, call 703-993-1300.

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