Syria SADIK AL-AZM

Syrian philosopher Sadik Al-Azm is one of the Arab world’s most authoritative intellectuals. For decades, he has actively advocated the right to freedom of speech and for the rule of law and democracy while also championing understanding between the Arab-Islamic world and Europe. Al-Azm studied philosophy and later taught at the American University of Beirut. The philosopher has held numerous professorships worldwide, for example at the University of Damascus as well as in Berlin and Hamburg. Focusing on the works of Immanuel Kant and Karl Marx, Al-Azm transfers the theories of the Enlightenment to the Arab-Islamic world, calling for its modernization through secularization. Because of the escalating violence in Syria, Sadik Al-Azm and his wife were granted political asylum in Germany in 2012. “Sadik was and is rightly celebrated in the West,” said the Islamic scholar Stefan Wild in his laudatory speech, while reminding us of Al-Azm’s difficulties in Arab countries. Although his books are widely read, they are never celebrated. “No Arab politician has ever adopted one of his theses. To my knowledge, no Arab university has ever dared to award him a prize.”
 

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About Sadik Al-Azm
Acceptance speech by Sadik Al-Azm
Laudatory speech for Sadik Al-Azm by Stefan Wild