REL 137 The Bible and the Quran (with Prof. Snyder) Spring 2021

Though the title for the course might suggest a straightforward comparison of two sacred books, the comparison of special interest in this course is not so much the books per se, but rather the books in the hands of their users: how these scriptures are approached, held, and used by their adherents, both historically and in the present. This keeps us from thinking that the Qur’an is derivative from and dependent on the Bible (a typically Western scholarly and Christian view), or that the Bible is a preliminary and imperfect revelation compared to the perfect revelation of divine word and will present in the Qur’an (the traditional Islamic view). When we ask, “what do these scriptures mean to their respective users,” we are less likely to fall into traditional habits of subordinating one to the other or thinking one is deficient because it’s not like the other.