For immediate release: From June 17-19, 2019, the Institute of Islamic Studies hosted the 10th annual Ibadi Conference at the University of Toronto. We were especially pleased to host His Excellency, Minister Abdullah Al Salimi of the Government of Oman, whose Ministry of Religious Endowments supported the conference and helped bring together a diverse and interdisciplinary group of scholars from around the world.
Ibadism is little known among North Americans. It is a theological sect within Islam, standing alongside the Shi’a and Sunni sects of Islam. Ibadi Muslims reside around the world, but have historically heralded from Oman and North Africa. Given the long history of Ibadism from the earliest periods of Islamic history to the present day, the conference featured vigorous discussion and analysis of early Ibadi manuscripts, Ibadism and current Omani culture, and North African approaches to Ibadi thought. UofT undergraduate and graduate students had the opportunity to engage scholars and discuss Omani affairs with participants who have a proven commitment to the study of this growing field. In recent years, early manuscripts of the Ibadi tradition have been unearth, edited, and published making the study of Ibadism a vibrant field for young scholars to enter and engage from the ground up. Through the study of Ibadism, the conference was an important opportunity to bring greater nuance and detail to both a complex region and diverse religious tradition.