Islamic studies scholar and founder of the first Islamic seminary in the U.S., Jihad Turk, explores the role of religious extremism and geopolitics in the rise of groups, such as ISIS on Monday, Nov. 9 at noon in Mitchell Hall, Room 102. The lecture is free and open to the public.

This lecture is sponsored by the Dialogue Institute of Southwest, a non-profit organization that seeks to promote mutual understanding, respect, compassion, peace, love and cooperation among people of diverse cultures by creating opportunities for direct communication and meaningful shared experiences.

Turk is the founding president of Bayan Claremont, an Islamic graduate school in Southern California. Prior to founding Bayan, Turk was the religious director of the Islamic Center of Southern California, the oldest and largest mosque in the Los Angeles-area.

Born to a Palestinian Muslim father and an American Christian mother, Turk spent his college years traveling the Muslim world and exploring his roots in the Islamic tradition, including periods at the Islamic University of Medina where he studied Arabic and Islamic Studies and in Iran where he studied Farsi at the University of Tehran and in Qum. He earned his B.A. in History and Arabic at the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master’s degree at the University of Texas, Austin, in Arabic and Islamic law and jurisprudence.

Turk’s research emphasizes usul al-fiqh, or jurisprudence, as well as theology and identity formation in the American Muslim community, interfaith relations and Islamic reform movements.

The interdisciplinary colloquium is sponsored by the UNM Office of Student Affairs, the Department of Communication & Journalism, the National Security Studies Program, the Religious Studies Programs and The Dialogue Institute of the Southwest