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Faraz Sheikh

Assistant Professor of Religious Studies

Email: [[fmsheikh]]
Interests: Comparative Religious Ethics; Ethical Formation; Muslim Ethics; Discourse and Subjectivity
Office: Wren 305

Areas of Specialization:

comparative religious ethics; Islamic ethics; subjectivity and subject formation; religious and moral subjectivity in comparative perspective; south Asian religious, ethical and mystical traditions; modern social and political ethics

Prof. Sheikh holds an M.A in Arabic and Islamic studies (2006) from Indiana University Bloomington (IUB) department of Near Eastern Languages & Cultures and a PhD in religious studies (2015) from IUB's department of religious studies with twin concentrations in Comparative Religious Ethics and Islamic Studies. At William & Mary, he teaches courses in Religion and Ethics, Conceptions of the Self: East and West, Ethical and Religious Formation, Religion & Hope and a range of courses in the field of Muslim Ethics.



Faraz Masood Sheikh, Forging Ideal Muslim Subjects: Discursive Practices, Subject Formation & Muslim Ethics. Lexington Studies in Classical and Modern Islamic Thought, (Lanham, MD: Lexington Press), August 2020. See details at

Peer-reviewed Journal Articles:

"Encountering Opposed Others and Countering Suggestions [khatarat]: Notes on Religious Tolerance from Ninth Century Arab-Muslim Thought," Comparative Islamic Studies Journal 11.2 (2015) 179 –204. 

"Being an Intelligent Slave of God: Discursive Strategies and Subject Formation in Early Muslim Thought," Journal of Religious Ethics 47(1):125-152, March 2019.

Book Reviews:

Faraz Sheikh (2019). Modern Muslim Theology: Engaging God and the World with Faith and Imagination by Martin Nguyen (Rowman & Littlefield Press, 2017) in American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences, 36(3), 87-91.

In Preparation:


Tentatively titled Javed Ahmad Ghamdi’s Ethical Critique of Modern South Asian Political Islam (Co-authoring book with Prof. Hassan Bashir of Texas A&M, Qatar Campus)

Peer-reviewed Journal Articles:

"The Ascent and Descent of Human Dignity: Belief and Human Flourishing in Said Nursi's Religious Thought" 

“Moral Fallibility, Islamic Virtue Ethics and the Liberal Public Sphere”

“Self-reflection and Moral Judgement in the Islamic Tradition”

Book Reviews:

Cyrus Ali Zargar, The Polished Mirror: Story-telling and the Pursuit of Virtue in Islamic Philosophy and Sufism (Oneworld Press, 2017).

  • RELG 221 Religion and Ethics
  • RELG 325 Understanding Muslim Ethics
  • RELG 308 Religion in the Time of Cholera
  • RELG 308 Ethical Formation in Comparative Perspective