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Irrationality in the Middle East and Islam (2nd GIS Congress)

03 November, 2016 22:35
Irrationality in the Middle East and Islam (2nd GIS Congress)

2nd GIS Congress

Date: July 7, 2017 @ 1:00 to 3:30 pm

Venue: Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales (INALCO), 65 Rue des Grands Moulins, 75013 Paris, France

If rationality denotes what complies with the mind, irrationality, by contrast, deals with all that, at first sight, can’t be explained and controlled by the ʿaql. In other words, irrationality is a negatively defined notion marked by lack or loss (ʿadam-, ġayr– ou lā-ʿaql), distance (ibʿād) or deviation (inḥirāf) from the intellect, or even it is the result of reduced rationality (qillat al-ʿaql).

An irrational behavior is considered rather strange, abnormal, and sometimes contrary to sound norms and moral principles. Consequently, this is the case of liminal states or of more or less voluntary marginal conducts: the insane and the mental ill, the drunk or the intoxicated, the silly, the foolish, the madly in love with beloved or with God, etc. In other cases, irrationality can be defined either by the temporary loss of self-control (anger, violent attack, fear, etc.), or by the lack of moderation and the inability to abstain from the pleasures of the flesh (uncontrolled appetite, a more or less licit sexual pleasure, etc.). However, irrationality also bears a specific knowledge, which is beyond the control of the logic, a vision of an alternative world and a different reality along with a set of spiritual insights that cannot be controlled and that are between the sensitive world and the unconscious: emotions, gratification of the senses, dreams, the world of magic and sorcery, divination, prophecy, superstition, miracle, the hereafter, ecstasy, mysticism, love, hallucination, imaginary, etc.

Propositions aimed at analyzing all the historical periods of the Middle East and Islam and involving different areas (philosophy, theology, literature, social sciences, anthropology, Islamic law, history, medicine, sciences, mysticism, arts, etc.) are invited to participate.

Panel organizer

Danilo Marino, CERMOM, Inalco, Paris,

Conference Website:


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Irrationality in the Middle East and Islam (2nd GIS Congress)Irrationality in the Middle East and Islam (2nd GIS Congress)
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