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Original scientific paper

Torn Between the Contours of Logic: Exploring Logical Normativity in Islamic Philosophical Theology

Abbas Ahsan ; University of Birmingham
Marzuqa Karima ; Independent scholar, London, UK

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page S10-41

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Western contemporary logic has been used to advance the field of Islamic philosophical theology, which historically utilised Aristotelian-Avicennian logic, on grounds of there being an inherent normativity in logic. This is in spite of the surrounding controversy on the status of logic in the Islamic theological tradition. The normative authority of logic means that it influences the content of what we ought to believe and how we ought to revise those beliefs. This paper seeks to demonstrate that, notwithstanding the incompatible differences between the two systems, the underlying feature of both Western contemporary logic and Aristotelian- Avicennian logic is logical normativity. It then argues that an inherent normativity of logic in the Islamic theological/philosophical tradition is unmotivated. Instead, it proposes to reinstate logic as anti-exceptional within the Islamic theological/philosophical tradition as a viable alternative.


Aristotelian-Avicennian logic; Western contemporary logic; normativity; logical consequence; Islamic theology/philosophy; Wittgenstein; Kripke; anti-exceptionalist logic; Al-Ghazālī

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