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ما كتبه البروفسور داوننك عنه

November 24, 2009

Professor Randall McGowen

Chair, NENA, Islamic World Search

Department of History

University of Oregon

Eugene, OR 97403-1288

Dear Professor McGowen:

I am writing to recommend to you a friend and colleague as well as a most extraordinary man for the position you have open in Islamic studies. Professor Abdulameer Al Aasam came to serve with us some months ago as the Louie Brown Visiting Scholar. During that time I have had the pleasure to get to know him and his wife.

Dr. Al Aasam did his undergraduate degree at the University of Baghdad, but then went on to get his Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Cambridge where he did his dissertation on the important Medieval scholar Ibn ar-Riwandi who challenged Islamic religious belief. After graduating from Cambridge, Professor Al Aasam went on to have an exemplary career. He went back to the University of Baghdad where he held a series of posts including administration. He soon began a stellar publishing career. Al Aasam’s work on Ibn ar- Riwandi was foundational for this pivotal figure.

In time, Al Aasam became something like the “dean of contemporary philosophers” in the Middle East. He taught many of the younger men who went to take positions in colleges and universities throughout the region. He himself presented papers and speeches across Europe and the Middle East—from Baghdad to Beirut, to Paris and Cambridge.

Al Aasam’s publishing career has included some twenty texts of which he was author. He also edited another large collection of books including Arab Modern Thought—a collection of work by Iraqi authors, and a Bibliography of the History of Philosophy again by Iraqi scholars.

Ironically, after spending a career educating educators for the Middle East, Professor Al Aasam was forced to leave his Iraqi homeland in the chaos of post-invasion Baghdad. Being a witness to this upheaval made him an even more important historian and philosopher of the region.

From my perspective of close interaction with Professor Al Aasam, he seems ideally suited for your new position. He is a scholar of the first rank who has seen recent events in the Islamic world up close and personal. I have also found him to be a person of unusual courage and vision. Dr. Al Aasam would bring distinction and diversity to your campus. I recommend him to you without reservation as being worthy of your most serious consideration.

If I may be of further assistance in your search please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

Frederick L. Downing, Ph.D.,

Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies

And Head of the Department

November 24, 2009

Professor Randall McGowen

Chair, NENA, Islamic World Search

Department of History

University of Oregon

Eugene, OR 97403-1288

Dear Professor McGowen:

I am writing to recommend to you a friend and colleague as well as a most extraordinary man for the position you have open in Islamic studies.  Professor Abdulameer Al Aasam came to serve with us some months ago as the Louie Brown Visiting Scholar.  During that time I have had the pleasure to get to know him and his wife.

Dr. Al Aasam did his undergraduate degree at the University of Baghdad, but then went on to get his Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Cambridge where he did his dissertation on the important Medieval scholar Ibn ar-Riwandi who challenged Islamic religious belief.   After graduating from Cambridge, Professor Al Aasam  went on to have an exemplary career.  He went back to the University of Baghdad where he held a series of posts including administration.  He soon began a stellar publishing career.  Al Aasam’s work on Ibn ar- Riwandi was foundational for this pivotal figure.

In time, Al Aasam became something like the “dean of contemporary philosophers” in the Middle East.  He taught many of the younger men who went to take positions in colleges and universities throughout the region.  He himself presented papers and speeches across Europe and the Middle East—from Baghdad to Beirut, to Paris and Cambridge.

Al Aasam’s publishing career has included some twenty texts of which he was author.  He also edited another large collection of books including Arab Modern Thought—a collection of work by Iraqi authors, and a Bibliography of the History of Philosophy   again by Iraqi scholars.

Ironically, after spending a career educating educators for the Middle East, Professor Al Aasam was forced to leave his Iraqi homeland in the chaos of post-invasion Baghdad.  Being a witness to this upheaval made him an even more important historian and philosopher of the region.

From my perspective of close interaction with Professor Al Aasam, he seems ideally suited for your new position.  He is a scholar of the first rank who has seen recent events in the Islamic world up close and personal.   I have also found him to be a person of unusual courage and vision.  Dr. Al Aasam would bring distinction and diversity to your campus.  I recommend him to you without reservation as being worthy of your most serious consideration.

If I may be of further assistance in your search please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

Frederick L. Downing, Ph.D.,

Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies

And Head of the Department

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