Staff International Exchange Programme 2006/07
We are very happy to inform our staff and students of the new Erasmus Exchange Programme with the Theology & Religious Studies Faculty at Sulayman Demirel University, Isparta in Turkey. This year we have had three Visiting Scholars from Turkey come to give lectures to our students and as well they have been involved in panel discussion amongst lecturers and M.A. students at the University. Just this May, Dr Amjad Hussain went to Sulayman Demirel University and gave lectures on Sikhism, Judaism having panel discussions with scholars at the Theology & Religious Studies Faculty.
Pictured Front Row L to R: Ranji Gurucharanam (3rd year BA Religion student), Helen Rees, Vice Chancellor Dr. Medwin Hughes, Dr. Bilal Gokkir, Dr. Haluk Songur, Dr. Amjad Hussain, Lynda Maddock
Back row: Kathleen Adnum, Stephen Gregg, Jessica Moraity (2nd Year BA Religion Student), Dr Gregory Barker, Gwilym Dyfri Jones (Head of Faculty), Dr. Ismail L.Hacinebioglu, Dr. John Gillibrand
Turkish Professors Visit The University
In an unprecedented intercultural interchange three professors of Philosophy and Religion from Suleyman Demirel University Isparta, Turkey came to Trinity College to meet with students, staff and faculty. Throughout the week they taught classes, engaged in interfaith dialogue and met individually with tutors and students. The visit was sponsored by the European Union’s Erasmus programme and arranged by the School of Theology, Religion and Islamic Studies.
The visit represents the historic prospects and tensions at work in Turkey. This county, with it’s officially secularist leanings, contains a populace that is largely Muslim. The visit to the University was an opportunity to raise questions about the interface between religion and politics and hear first hand about the nature and possibilities of religious faith and democracy in Turkey.
Highlights of the week included pointed questions by students on the nature of Islam. These were met by thoughtful responses from the three guests. A dialogue between Muslims and Christians on the figures of the apostle Paul and Muhammad revealed both areas of agreement and disagreement—all participants felt that the conversation was just beginning. Each of the visitors shared their own areas of expertise. Dr. Ismail L. Hacinabioglu spoke to Islamic thought and Muslim civilisation, Dr. Bilal Gokkir shared his expertise in Qur’anic studies and parallels with the New Testament and Dr. Haluk Songur spoke to issues of Islamic Law and Muslim Civilisation.
In return of the favour, Dr. Amjad Hussain went to Suleyman Demirel for 2 weeks in May to give lectures on various subjects. Dr Amjad Hussain just returned from an Erasmus Lecturer Exchange Programme in the Theology & Religious Studies Faculty of Suleyman Demirel University in Isparta, Turkey. He did two lectures on Sikhism and Judaism for first, second and third year Turkish students and he was involved in a panel discussion with a number of Turkish lecturers from various Faculties with regard to the topic “West & East, Dialogue between Civilizations”. Dr Ismail Hacinabioglu was the chair of the conference and began the discussions. This discussion was very fruitful and mind stimulating dealing with topics of Islam, culture and civilization.
Suleyman Demirel University has some 30,000 students. The Visiting Scholars and Dr Amjad Hussain shared a desire for further interchanges between the two institutions, inviting faculty and students to visit, lecture and learn. In the near future we hope to have students exchange programme as well as staff.
Pictured Front Row R to L: Dr. Amjad Hussain, Professor Ekrem Sariçoğlu (Dean of Theology & Religious Studies Faculty) and Professor Ismail Hakki Göksoy
Link to the Theology & Religious Studies Faculty at Sulayman Demirel University: