Koran By Heart: film journey @ Gleeson Library

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Gleeson Library has received a wonderful collection of books and DVDs as part of the Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys, a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association.

Embarking on Gleeson’s Muslim Journeys, we’re pleased to present a free film screening of Koran By Heart, a film by Greg Barker, on Monday, April 8 @ 6:00 p.m. in the Donohue Rare Book Room. The screening will be introduced by Aisha Morgan from Islamic Networks Group, and is co-sponsored by University Ministry as part of UM’s annual Interfaith Week celebration April 7-13.

The film depicts the annual competition when about one hundred of Islam’s best young students from around the world come to Cairo for the International Holy Koran Competition. Koran by Heart follows the progress of three ten-year-old scholars, a girl and two boys, as they compete in the two-week event. Scheduled during Ramadan, the competition is grueling and exhilarating. The students adhere to the practice of daytime fasting, and the rounds sometimes go well past midnight. The finals are broadcast on Egyptian national television. Koran by Heart captures the skill, determination, and faith of the young competitors, and lets us glimpse the social and political tides that pull at them from every direction.

Our new books and DVDs are on display (and available for checking out) in the lobby. The grant also includes a subscription to Oxford Islamic Studies Online, a multi-layered, growing repository of reference content and commentary.

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