Dr. Aurangzeb Haneef is an Assistant Professor in the Study of Religion. He is primarily a scholar of Islamic Intellectual History with a focus on the Formative and early Classical periods; namely, the first four centuries of Islam. On a macro level, his research includes themes such as the transmission of knowledge, oral and written text, and scriptural interpretation, among others. On a micro level, to a significant degree, his focus has been on the Qurʾān and its commentary tradition (Tafsīr). He is also interested in the intersection of scriptural interpretation and the themes of violence, peacebuilding, and ecology in the modern period within the framework of Liberation Theology.


Selected Qualifications


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

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

Principal supervisor: Dr. Andreas Görke, University of Edinburgh


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

Focus: Islamic Studies 


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

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


Research Interests

  1. Transmission of knowledge in early Muslim societies 

  2. The oral and the written in early Islam

  3. Text and interpretation

  4. Qurʾānic studies

  5. Qurʾānic exegesis (Tafsīr)

  6. Religion, ethics, and justice

  7. Religion, violence, and peacebuilding

  8. Religion and ecology

  9. Sufism


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-2XX: The Sacred Nature: Religion and Ecology

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

  3. 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:

Photography: @AurangzebH

X: @AurangzebHaneef