Dr Amal Awad, who graduated from Darwin this summer with a PhD in Arabic-Islamic Philosophy, has been awarded a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship, allowing her to continue her research at Cambridge.
Granted to an annual cohort of outstanding early career researchers, the British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship is a three-year award open to researchers in the humanities or social sciences. It supports the holders to pursue an independent project, with the aim of completing a significant piece of publishable research. Funded by the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, the Fellowship provides its recipients with a foundation on which to build their academic career.
In her project, Amal proposes to provide an in-depth analysis of the formation of the philosophy of mind in the early centuries of Post-classical Arabic thought.
She will look specifically at the period 1100–1300 CE, during which Islamic-Arabic philosophers interrogated the nature of the soul, soul–body causation, and the unity of consciousness in ways that would define the philosophy of mind in the Islamic world in the centuries that followed.
She also aims to translate the section On Psychology (fī al-Nafs) of The Compendium in Logic and Philosophy (al-Mulakhkhaṣ fī l-manṭiq wa-l-ḥikma) by the influential philosopher Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī (1150–1210 CE).
“Despite the importance of this philosophical compendium, the book (in Arabic) was edited and published for the first time only in 2021,” she explains. “Having rarely been translated, al-Rāzī’s writings are relatively inaccessible to Anglophone readers.”