Dr. Waleed El-Ansary discusses “Egypt in Transition” at Rivier University’s inaugural lecture of the Global Speaker Series

NASHUA, N.H. – In the first of what will be an ongoing Global Speaker Series at Rivier University as part of a growing global engagement initiative, Dr. Waleed El-Ansary was on the Rivier campus today to give a talk titled “Egypt in Transition: Future Developments and Global Implications.”

Dr. El-Ansary is Helal, Hisham and Laila Edris El-Swedey University Chair in Islamic Studies at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, previously serving as an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of South Carolina. He is a consultant to the Royal Court of Jordan as well as the Grand Mufti of Egypt.

His research focuses on the relationship between religion, science, and economics, and he has lectured widely on topics relating to economics, philosophy, and policy. He is the author of “Economics of Clash of Civilizations: Reexamining Religion and Violence” and “Revisiting the Qur'anic Basis for the Use of War Language” in The Crescent and Dove: Muslim Perspectives on Peace and Conflict Resolution (2010) and Muslim and Christian Understanding: Theory and Application of "A Common Word" (2010, edited with David Linnan). El-Ansary received an M.A. in Economics from the University of Maryland and his Ph.D. in the Human Sciences with concentration in Islamic Studies from George Washington University.

“I wanted to connect some of the issues that are going on in Egypt today, with some of the issues that we’re engaged with here at Riv,” he said.

Dr. El-Ansary spoke to a large crowd, including several students and faculty members, about the issues of social justice and what he described as an “intellectual battle” currently going on in Egypt, and the role that universities, especially those with religious ties, can play in addressing and engaging in these issues. He discussed the relationship between religion and economic development, as well as science and philosophy, followed by an opportunity for attendees to ask questions.

"As a globally engaged University, Rivier was honored to host Dr. El-Ansary on our campus, who is a leading intellectual in the Islamic world,” said Dr. Mark Meehan, Rivier’s Associate Vice President of Global Engagement. “The students and faculty were able to connect to Dr. El-Ansary’s discussion as he addressed issues that impact all of humanity."