The Muhammad Cartoons: What are the issues?

The publication of twelve cartoons last year lampooning the Prophet Muhammad has had huge impact around the world. Riots in many Muslim countries have caused deaths and destruction. Why are Muslims so angry and what are the issues?

Four University of Lethbridge professors will present their views on some aspects:

Dr. Bruce MacKay has a PhD in Religious Studies from the University of Toronto. He has studied Islam at Toronto and Harvard Universities and has lived in Jerusalem and traveled through Jordan, Egypt, Palestine and Israel. He has taught Islam at the University of Lethbridge.

Dr. MacKay will discuss key principles of Islam and the historical context behind the prohibition of images of Muhammad.

Dr. John von Heyking is Associate Professor of Political Science at the U of L and teaches courses in political philosophy and religion and politics. His PhD is from the University of Notre Dame. His publications include articles on religious freedom and the Charter, just war theory, deliberative democracy and Islamic politics.

Dr. von Heyking'’s talk will cover the readiness for rational political discussion in Islamic and Western Post-Enlightenment contexts.

Dr. Tom Robinson has a PhD form McMaster University. He has taught at the U of L for twenty years. His research deals with orthodoxy and dissent in religious movements, and he has published various books on religion. His most recent book, co-authored with other members of the Religious Studies Department, is titled World Religions: a guide to the essentials (2006), for which he wrote several chapters, including the one on Islam.

Dr. Robinson'’s talk will deal with religious orthodoxy and dissent, religious attitudes to art, and the value of free and protected speech in a diverse world.

Dr. Trudy Govier has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Waterloo and is the author on a number of books, including Forgiveness and Revenge (2002) and Dilemmas of Trust (1997). She has taught ethics, philosophy of law, and history of philosophy and is currently teaching political philosophy and logic at the U of L.

Dr. Govier will discuss conceptions of respect, freedom, and religious toleration.

Time: 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Location: Lethbridge Public Library, Theatre Gallery.


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