Islam’s Great Divide
The 1400-year-old schism between Sunnis and Shi‘is has rarely been as toxic as it is today, feeding wars and communal strife in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan and many other countries, with tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran escalating. Steeped in the Middle East since university days, historian, Arab linguist and international lawyer John McHugo is the ideal person to explain how a succession conflict in the 7th century can still have such massive repercussions today. Join us for a talk by the author himself to launch this essential guide to understanding the genesis, development and manipulation of one of the greatest schisms that has come to define Islam. A Concise History of Sunnis and Shi’is charts nothing less than the struggle for the soul of the Muslim world.
John McHugo is an international lawyer and Arabic linguist, with over forty years’ experience of the region. He earned a BA in Oriental Studies from Oxford University, an MA in Arabic Studies from the American University in Cairo and an MLitt in medieval Sufi thought from Oxford University. He has worked as a lawyer in several Arab countries, notably Egypt, Bahrain and Oman. A board member of the Council for Arab British Understanding and of the British Egyptian Society, John McHugo is also chair of the Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine.
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