Author evening with Seyfeddin Kara: In Search of Ali ibn Abi Talib’s Codex

Join IHRC for an author evening with Professor Seyfeddin Kara, to discuss his book In Search of Ali ibn Abi Talib’s Codex: History and Traditions of the Earliest Copy of the Qur’an. We will be discussing the history of the text of the Qur’an from both Shi’i and Sunni traditions.

WHEN: Thursday 20 June 2019, 6.30pm

WHERE: IHRC Bookshop, 202 Preston Road, Wembley, HA9 8PA

RSVP by emailing

In Search of Ali ibn Abi Talib’s Codex is available to purchase online and in-store.

Free event
Refreshments available
Wudu and prayer facilities available

IHRC Bookshop is a minute’s walk from Preston Road Underground station (Metropolitan line). Free parking on nearby residential roads is also available.

About the book:

The history of the text of the Qur’an has been a longstanding subject of interest within the field of Islamic Studies, but the debate has so far been focused on the Sunni traditions about the codices of Caliphs Abu Bakr and ‘Uthman b. ‘Affan. Little to no attention has been given to the traditions on ‘Ali b. Abi Talib’s collection of the Qur’an. This book examines both Shi’i and Sunni traditions on the issue, aiming to date them back to the earliest possible date and, if possible, verify their authenticity. To achieve this, the traditions are examined using Harald Motzki’s isnad-cum-matn method, which is recognised as an efficient tool in dating the early Islamic traditions and involves analysis of both matn (text) and isnad (chain of trans-mission) with an emphasis on finding a correlation between the two.

About the author:

Professor Kara was born and raised in Turkey and studied in seminaries in Syria, Iran and the UK. He is an interdisciplinary researcher and his academic interests focus on both the early history of Islam and contemporary issues pertaining to Islam and Muslims. He has published journal articles in the Journal of Near Eastern Studies, Journal of Royal Asiatic Society, The Muslim World and Journal of Shi’a Islamic Studies and is currently working on a monograph about the Shiʿi approach to the textual history of the Qur’an. Prior to joining Hartford Seminary, Seyfeddin worked as a Teaching Fellow at the University of Durham, UK.

Before pursuing a career in academia, he worked at London-based Islamic Human Rights Commission for several years and submitted reports to the various United Nations treaty bodies. He also attended meetings at the UN Human Rights Council, and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. He is a fellow of UK Higher Education Academy. Most of his works are available at

Professor Kara is the second holder of the Imam Ali Chair in Shi’i Studies and Dialogue among Islamic Legal Schools, the only chair of its kind in North America.

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