Evanston Township High School will host author Garry Wills discussing his new book “What the Qur’an Meant: And Why It Matters” on Thursday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m., in the school auditorium.
Malcolm Gladwell has called Wills, a Pulitzer-Prize winning historian, writer, and journalist, “one of the great political writers of his time.”
With his New York Times bestselling classics “What Jesus Meant,” “Why I Am a Catholic,” and “Why Priests?”, Wills established himself as an authority on religion, American politics, and how they intersect. Now, after a lifetime spent thinking and writing about Christianity, Wills takes on one his greatest intellectual challenges yet in “What the Qur’an Meant: And Why It Matters.”
The Qur’an is sacred to roughly 1.6 billion people. For Americans, understanding the Islamic faith has never been more important than it is now. What the Qur’an Meant offers Christian and non-Muslim readers the opportunity to expand their understanding of Islam through direct analysis of the text.
Wills expertly contextualizes the Qur’an, comparing it with other sacred books that may be more familiar to non-Muslim readers, including the Old Testament and New Testament.
Wills, emeritus professor of history at Northwestern University, opens an interfaith dialogue just as he examines how the Qur’an has been misinterpreted and exploited: by politicians and pundits, by persons of other faiths unfamiliar with the basic facts of Islam, and by fearful persons who seek to prove that Islam is a religion of violence.
Wills will be interviewed on stage by Chaplain Tahera Ahmad, Associate University Chaplain and Director of Interfaith Engagement at Northwestern University. She currently serves on as a trustee on the Parliament of the World’s Religions and on the first American Muslim-Jewish Advisory Council. In 2014, Ahmad became the first woman to represent the United States at the International Quran Competition in Indonesia where she placed 6th in the world.
The event, free and open to the public, is suitable for ages 12 and up.
ETHS is located at 1600 Dodge Ave., Evanston, 60201. The auditorium is wheelchair accessible. Guests should plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to 7:00pm to find parking and seats. Parking is available in the lot across from the main entrance, off of Dodge Avenue, or in the lots behind the high school. Parking is also available along Dodge Avenue according to posted City of Evanston signs.
The event is sponsored by Family Action Network, in partnership with MCC Academy and the New Trier Multifaith Alliance.