Magazine
Latest Issue

Previous convictions

I used to be sure that Islam needed a rational reformation. Yet history has shown me that innovation and freedom have come from faith as much as reason

By Ehsan Masood   February 2009

Surely Islam needs a reformation? Isn’t literalism in religion an obstacle to open minds; and isn’t the promotion of rationalism the best way to boost the slow pace of science and innovation in the Islamic world? Until a few years ago, I believed that the answer to all these questions was a qualified “yes.” Today I am not so sure.

This is because I’ve spent the past few years reading my way into the history of science during what is known as the golden age of Islamic civilisation. This is the 700-year period between the 8th and the 16th centuries,…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect