Great Thinkers of the Muslim World, 600-1300

Scott Lucas
Wednesdays 10AM - 12PM
September 27, October 4, 11, 18, 25, November 1, 8, 15, 29, and December 6, 2023
Watch the video to learn more about this course

Great Thinkers of the Muslim World, 600-1300

Fall 2023
In Session
10AM - 12PM
September 27, October 4, 11, 18, 25, November 1, 8, 15, 29, and December 6, 2023

Course Format: 



Main Campus



Over the past 1,400 years, numerous Muslims have contributed to the rich intellectual traditions of Islam. These thinkers explored theology, philosophy, mysticism, and science. Yet few of them are known today by educated Americans. This seminar aims to introduce a range of sophisticated Muslim thinkers from the first seven centuries of Islam in the region known today as the Middle East and North Africa. Seminarians will have the chance to read selections in the translation of these thinkers' writings, along with selected secondary works, to facilitate an appreciation for the diversity and quality of classical Islamic thought.

Required Reading: 

  • Al-Khalili, Jim. The House of Wisdom: How Arabic Science Saved Ancient Knowledge and Gave us the Renaissance. New York: Penguin, 2010. (Amazon)
  • Saeed, Abdullah. Islamic Thought: An Introduction. New York: Routledge, 2006. (Amazon)

Meet Your Professor

Associate Professor
School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies, Religious Studies Program

SCOTT LUCAS is an associate professor of Islamic Studies at the UA whose research explores Islam's legal, theological, and spiritual traditions in the premodern period. He has been working with Arabic manuscripts from Yemen written by scholars in the Zaydi Shi'i tradition. He is also studying two famous Qur'an commentaries from the Sunni tradition and published a two-volume translation of selections from an early encyclopedic Qur'an commentary.


  • All classes will be delivered on-campus and online via live video streaming. Students will enroll in their preferred format during registration.
  • On-Campus classes will be held in the Rubel Room at the University of Arizona's Poetry Center (1508 E Helen St, Tucson, AZ 85721). Enrollment for in-person classes is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. All students enrolled to attend in person also have complete online access and may choose to attend one or all class sessions remotely if desired.
  • Online students may attend all classes via live video streaming and will be able to participate in all course Q&A sessions with the professor in real-time. A high-speed internet connection and a device capable of running Zoom are required to connect. Online access will be password protected and only available to enrolled students.
  • Class Recordings - All HSP classes are recorded and available for every enrolled student to watch for the duration of the course and one month after the last class session. This option is offered to aid students who cannot attend the live class times but desire to enroll and participate asynchronously. We hope this option also aids students who are traveling or have a necessary appointment that conflicts with a class session to stay connected and engaged with the course material.


Poetry Center
Dorothy Rubel Room
1508 E Helen
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States
Located on the SE corner of Helen Street and Vine Avenue, one block north of Speedway and three blocks west of Campbell Ave.

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