Dr. Aurangzeb Haneef is an Assistant Professor in the Study of Religion. 


He is primarily a scholar of Islamic Intellectual History of the Formative and early Classical periods; namely, the first four centuries of Islam. His research connects various underlying threads such as historiography, the transmission of knowledge, the oral and the written, manuscripts, text and meaning, and the ways and forms of religious truth-making. These threads came together in his doctoral work where he specialized in the contextual study of early Tafsīr (Qurʾānic exegesis). 


As for the Modern period, Dr. Haneef is interested in the intersection of Qurʾānic interpretation and the themes of conflict, peacebuilding, and ecology through the lenses of Reform, Decoloniality, and Islamic Liberation Theology.


Selected Qualifications


  • Ph.D. Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Edinburgh, 2022


The Tafsīr of Sufyān al-Thawrī (d. 161/778): A study of its provenance, sources, methods, and topics

Principal supervisor: Andreas Görke, Senior Lecturer in Islamic Studies, University of Edinburgh

External examiner: Nicolai Sinai, Professor of Islamic Studies, University of Oxford


  • Master of Theological Studies, Divinity School, Harvard University, 2009

Focus: Islamic Studies 


  • International MA in Peace, Conflict, and Development Studies, Universitat Jaume I (Spain) and University of Innsbruck (Austria), 2007


Religion and Peacebuilding: Paradigms of peace, nonviolence, and the use of force in Islam” 

Thesis advisor: Mohammed Abu-Nimer, Prof. of Peace, Human Rights, and Cultural Relations, American University


Research Interests


  1. History of religious ideas

  2. Transmission of knowledge in early Muslim societies 

  3. Tafsīr (Qurʾānic exegesis

  4. Ḥadīth (reports about the Prophet)

  5. Religion, ethics, and justice

    a. Religion, conflict, and peacebuilding 

    b. Religion and ecology


Undergraduate courses


Current courses

  1. SS-101: Islamic Studies

  2. REL-235: Religion, Conflict, and Peacebuilding

  3. REL-362/HIST-337: Qurʾān and its Interpreters: Between Text and Context

  4. REL-363: Jihād: Religion and Warfare in the Islamicate Context

Future courses

  1. REL-1XX: World Religions

  2. REL-2XX: The Sacred Nature: Religion and Ecology

  3. REL-3XX: The Prophetic Word: The Origins, Development, and Function of Ḥadīth

  4. REL-3XX: Qurʾān in the Modern: Interpreting an Ancient Text

Past courses

  1. HIST 235: Jihād: A Social, Political, and Theological History

  2. HIST 236: Classical Sufism


Academic and other links




Academic blog