ACADEMIC BLOG

Research, Reflections & Commentary

My Academic Blog consists of posts where I share preliminary thoughts about early stage academic research, reflections on theories and methods in the study of religion and Islamic studies, commentaries, summaries and excerpts from primary and secondary sources that are of interest, and short academic essays on topics that serve other scholars and the general public. While none of the posts are peer reviewed academic publications, they cite and comment on others' academic work.

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  • Khalil Andani

"Revelation in Islam" Wins the Best PhD Dissertation Award ~ Foundation for Iranian Studies

Updated: Nov 12, 2020

It is an immense honor to learn that my 800 page dissertation “Revelation in Islam: Qur’ānic, Sunni, and Shiʿi Ismaili Perspectives” was named Best PhD Dissertation of the Year by the Foundation for Iranian Studies. I owe a special thanks to my entire family, my Harvard Thesis Committee chaired by Dr. Ali Asani, and many well-wishers throughout the years. And frankly, I am just happy to know that someone outside Harvard actually read through these 800 pages.


My plan going forward is to write and publish two books based on this dissertation. The first will document and analyze the emergence of various Quranic Revelation models through the classical period within nascent Sunni and Shi'i traditions; the second book will analyze Ismaili Muslim theories of revelation, hermeneutics, and resurrection through the classical and modern periods.



Below is the award citation from the Awards Committee:


"In making its decision, the Committee, following the criteria established by the Foundation’s Board of Directors, noted that Khalil Andani has made an exceptional contribution to the field of Iranian and Middle Eastern Studies by, among other achievements, “stating clearly the study’s problematic… constructing an adequate and efficient theoretical framework…developing and using successfully a rigorous methodology to bring together a significant array of primary and secondary sources… securing critical information by judiciously examining different but relevant opinions about his subject matter, i.e., meanings, implications, and the nature of the Qur’ān revealed to Prophet Muhammad as divine speech, divine writing, divine inspiration, revelatory recitation, or scripture… adopting an innovative multidisciplinary approach to derive intellectually reasonable and historically modifiable understanding of different Qur’ānic Revelation models… incorporating various theological and hermeneutical arguments to define the meaning, nature and effect of Revelatory Principle, Revelatory Process, and Revelatory Product … demonstrating originality in approach, balance in reaching conclusions, adeptness in conjoining thought, literature, and history to support the dissertation’s findings.… excellent organization of the work.”


For those interested, you can access and read my entire Dissertation here: https://dash.harvard.edu/handle/1/37365111

After the Dissertation Defense (pre-Covid era) - November 2019


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