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An Islamic reading of Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard”

Hasan, Md. Mahmudul (2018) An Islamic reading of Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard”. In: Symposium on Contextualization and Relevantization of Religion to the Contemporary World, 5 July 2018, HS Seminar Room, Level 3, HS Building. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Perhaps, the earliest literary scholar to significantly discuss the issue of looking at English literature from an Islamic perspective is Syed Ali Ashraf (1925 – 1998). His “Islamic Principles and Methods in the Teaching of Literature” (1978) is a foundational work that discusses the place of literature in a total Islamic worldview. He talks about the fundamental moral responsibility of man on earth and looks at literature from that perspective. He argues that, being human production, literature as a whole cannot be completely good and completely bad, stating: “No human activity is entirely good or entirely bad because only God is absolutely good and Satan is absolutely bad” (1978: 52). Therefore, when approaching a text, practitioners of literary studies should bear in mind that some ideas it transmits can be acceptable in Islam, while some others cannot. Given this conceptual premise, this study will look at Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” (1751) from Islamic perspectives and will seek to identify common grounds and differentiations between Islamic teachings and Gray’s ideas as expressed in the poem.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Plenary Papers)
Additional Information: 6409/68522
Uncontrolled Keywords: Thomas Gray; Syed Ali Ashraf; Islam and English literature; human equality; equality of human potentials
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc > BP1 Islam > BP170.8 Universality of Islam
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0080 Criticism
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Kulliyyahs/Centres/Divisions/Institutes: Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences
Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences > Department of English Language & Literature
Depositing User: Dr. Md. Mahmudul Hasan
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2018 16:26
Last Modified: 14 Dec 2018 16:26
URI: http://irep.iium.edu.my/id/eprint/68522

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