Ibn Rushd Fund for Freedom of Thought

Members of the jury 2006

Ahmad Faez al-Fawwaz

Ahmad Faez al-Fawwaz was born in Riqqa in 1934. After studying medicine in the Syrian University in Damascus (1952-1957) he did his PhD and his specialisation in internal medicine in Berlin at Humboldt University and at the Charitè Hospital in 1967. Since then he had been working as a physician in Riqqa in Syria and is actively engaged in politics. Between 1980 and 1995 he was imprisoned due to his activities in the Syrian Communist Party.

After his release he worked as a physician till 2001. Dr. Ahmad al-Fawwaz, who is politically independent, is currently the head of the Syrian human rights organisation.

Angelika Neuwirth

Angelika Neuwirth was born in 1943 in Nienburg/Weser. After spending an academic year at the University of Teheran she began studying Jewish Studies, Arabic Literature and Classical Philology at the University of Göttingen (1964-67). She continued her studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1967-1970), followed by her PhD in Arabic Literature at the University of Göttingen (1972) and her postdoctoral lecturing qualification in Arabic Literature and Islamic Studies at the University of Munich (1977). She was visiting professor at the University of Jordan teaching Arabic Philosophy (1977-1981) and was director of a department at the Royal Academy for Islamic Civilization (1981-1983). This was followed by a deputy chair at the University of Bochum (1983-1984), a Fiebinger–university chair at the University of Bamberg (1985–91), a short-time chair at the University of Ain-Shams in Cairo (1989/1990), a chair for Arabic Literature at Free University in Berlin (since 1991). In the years 1994–99 Prof. A. Neuwirth was Director of the Orient Institute of German Oriental Society in Beirut and Istanbul. Between 1997-1999 she supervised two EU-Projects (MEDA Democraty) in Beirut und Istanbul. Since 2003 she and Almut Bruckstein run the poject “Jewish and Islamic Hermeneutics as Cultural Criticism” at the Wissenschaftskolleg Berlin. She is advisory board in the project "World Religions" (Suhrkamp-Verlag) for the Orient-Institut in Hamburg, she is member of the jury of the German Exchange Service DAAD as well as confidential professor of Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes. In 1996 she was awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz for her outstanding services in cultural cooperations between Germany and Lebanon.

Publications:

  • Abdallatif al-Baghdadis Bearbeitung des Buches Lambda der aristotelischen Metaphysik. Wiesbaden 1972
  • Studien zur Komposition der mekkanischen Suren. Berlin 1981
  • Kulturelle Selbstbehauptung der Palästinenser. Survey der modernen Palästinensischen Dichtung. (co-authors Birgit Embalo & Friederike Pannewick). Beiruter Texte und Studien 71. Beirut/Würzburg 2001.

 

Asma Khader

Asma Khader, lawyer and human rights activist, is former President of the Jordanian Women's Union from 1992 to 1996 and founder and co-ordinator 1997 of the international women rights organization SIGI-Sisterhood in Jordan. She established a legal assistance program for Jordanian women and is a founder and member of several women's human rights NGOs. Elected to the Permanent Arab Court as Counsel on violence against women in 1995, she is well known for her campaigns to strengthen legislation outlawing honour killing. Ms. Khader is also a member of the Executive Committee of the International Commission of Jurists and in 1998 she founded the human rights organization „Mizan - Law Group for Human Rights“, a network of lawyers and human rights activists, which she co-ordinates until today. She has received numerous awards and honours for her work including the Human Rights Watch 1990 and the Jordanian Independence Medal of the First Degree for her role in formulating the Jordanian National Charter (1991).

She published many articles and books on right and human rights issues like „Law and the future of Palestinian women“ and as co-authoress „The Jordanian woman and her political engagement“ and „The Jordanian woman and the right to vote“ (all published in Arabic language).

Qassim Haddad

Qassim Haddad was born in 1948 in Bahrain. He is co-founder of the “Family of the Poets and Authors of Bahrain” in 1969. In 1996 he founded the web site „Jehat al Shi’r“ (direction of poetry www.jehat.com). Qassim Haddad is the editor-in-chief for the journal “Kalimat” (words) and President of the Writers’ Union of Bahrain.

He is author of 15 collections of poems and one of the best known poets in his country. Some of his works like „Qalb al-hubb“ und „ad-Dam“ have been translated into different languages. He has also written a book on theatre in Bahrain.