Islam and ISIS: Understanding the Differences

Thursday, April 7, 7:00 pm
Guest speaker Fatima Z. Rahman

The heinous terrorist attacks in Brussels, Paris and San Bernardino have brought the public's attention to the most significant security threat to the world: Islamist terrorism. This talk will discuss the ideology of Political Islam which is followed by transnational terrorist groups like ISIS and will explain how it differs from Islam, the theology, followed by a billion Muslims worldwide.

Our Speaker: Fatima Z. Rahman is Assistant Professor of Politics and Chair of Islamic World Studies at Lake Forest College.  Dr. Rahman's research and teaching specializations are Islam and Politics and Middle East Politics.  Dr. Rahman received her BA in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego, her MA in Political Science from the University of California, Riverside, and her PhD in Political Science from the University of California, Irvine in 2012.


As one of seven recipients of Lake Forest’s Hotchkiss Leave program,
Dr. Rahman earned a full semester off from teaching during the spring of 2016, devoting herself full-time to her research, data analysis, and writing.  She will be focusing on three fascinating projects during her leave from Lake Forest College.  She has generously agreed to speak to us during her academic leave.
My research projects examine how American Muslim women view Islamic law, what their position on it is, and how different factors explain variations in their views. My other research project is examining the effects of Islamic law on women’s economic rights. In that project, I’m examining how states that incorporate Islamic law into their legal code affect women’s economic rights, in particular, women’s right to employment, and so on. In my third project, I’m examining the effect of Islamist groups on the rights of religious minorities—how their ideology and behavior affects these groups in the Muslim world.

This will be a fascinating evening, and a unique opportunity to learn more about Islam and many complex and vexing issues surrounding current political and cultural realities.