The visit of a group of students from Ilāhiyāt College at Kocaeli University (Turkey) Al-Furqān Islamic Heritage Foundation
On Wednesday 1st August 2018, Al-Furqān Foundation hosted a group of mainly fourth-year undergraduates from Ilāhiyāt College at Kocaeli University, Turkey. The students were in London for the purposes of improving their English language skills. Whilst here they had undertaken a series of visits to many of the prominent tourist and educational attractions that London offers, in addition to visiting numerous centres, educational institutes and organisations concerned with the promotion of the Islamic heritage and scholarship.
The students displayed considerable interest in the Library at Al-Furqān Foundation, taking a particularly keen interest in the Sezgin collection and the Ottoman Turkish literature holdings. They were given an introduction about the Foundation and its Library holdings as well as its Online Database by Dr Celeste Gianni, a member of the staff in charge of the Library & Exchange. During conversation and questions, many of them expressed interest in some of the fields well represented by the holdings of Al-Furqān Library, including works on Ḥanafī jurisprudence, philosophy and kalām, among other interests.
The head of the delegation, Dr Ali Cançelik, Assistant Professor of Ottoman Turkish Language and Islamic Turkish Literature, conveyed his surprise at the extent and coverage of the Library’s Ottoman Turkish literature collection, saying that he had not expected to find certain works in a library in London.
The visit culminated in a broad discussion of how Al-Furqān Foundation could assist these students in their research, with the students collectively requesting to remain in touch about Al-Furqān Foundation’s activities, particularly any occurring in Istanbul.
Dr Ali Cançelik and the Ilāhiyāt College at Kocaeli University were gifted a copy of Al-Furqān Foundation’s edition of Bidāyat al-Mubtadī, a manual of Ḥanafī jurisprudence that several students took an ardent interest in.