Vice Chancellor releases ‘Sir Syed Ahmad Khan: Reason, Religion and Nation’


Aligarh : Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) Vice Chancellor, Professor Tariq Mansoor today released, Professor M Shafey Kidwai’s book, ‘Sir Syed Ahmad Khan: Reason, Religion and Nation’ that bagged the Kalinga Literary Award for Minorities/ Women/ Dalit and Tribal Literature 2021.

The book published by Routledge provides the researchers with fact-finding, analysis and exploration ideas for future research directions in fields of political science, colonial studies, history, Islamic studies, religious studies and South-Asian studies.

Releasing the book, Vice Chancellor, Prof Mansoor said, “This book gives a comprehensible, intelligible and lucid narrative on AMU founder, Sir Syed Ahmad Khan’s life and his invaluable contribution to the democratic consciousness in India”.

‘Sir Syed Ahmad Khan: Reason, Religion and Nation’ explores the life and works of Sir Syed in the broader context of socio-political debates in nineteenth-century India, he added.

“I am sure readers interested in Sir Syed Ahmad Khan’s life and work would find Prof Shafey Kidwai’s work a mine of well-arranged information, objectively and competently interpreted. For this we should all be grateful to him”, stated Professor Emeritus and eminent Indian historian of ancient and medieval India, Irfan Habib in the foreword of the book.

The biography also has forewords by Prof Faisal Devji (University of Oxford), Sukrita Pau Kumar (Noted scholar and poet), Anisur Rahman (Noted scholar and critic), Prof Yasmin Saikia (Arizona State University) and Syeda Saiyidain Hameed (Noted author, former Planning Commission of India member and Former Chancellor of the Maulana Azad National Urdu University).

The author of the book, Prof Shafey Kidwai (Department of Mass Communication) said: “In the volume, I have attempted to explore Sir Syed’s views on issues like colonial law and administration, the concept of blasphemy, conversion, female education, religious beliefs, freedom of press, emancipation of women, Hindu–Muslim unity, Urdu–Hindi controversy, and reservation for Muslims”.

AMU Registrar, Mr Abdul Hamid, IPS; Prof A R Kidwai (Director, UGC HRD Centre), Prof Mohammad Asim Siddiqui (Department of English), Prof Mohammad Sajjad (Department of History), Prof Pitabas Pradhan (Chairman, Department of Mass Communication) and Mr Ajay Bisaria (Department of Hindi) attended the book release function.

The biography is based on extensive archival research and a close study of Sir Syed writings, speeches, and addresses. It will give an understanding of Sir Syed as one of the prime movers of modern India, his relentless efforts in bringing social reforms and intellectual awakening, his religious thought developed on logical and reasoned lines, how his position in the judicial department left him time to be active in many fields and his career as an author of noteworthy books which fearlessly laid bare the weaknesses and errors of the British administration.

Sir Syed Ahmad Khan: Reason, Religion and Nation is available for purchase on the link,