Mona Siddiqui

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Mona Siddiqui

Born(1963-05-06)6 May 1963
Karachi, Pakistan
Alma materUniversity of Leeds

Mona Siddiqui OBE FRSE FRSA[1] (born 3 May 1963)[2][3] is a British academic. She is Professor of Islamic and Interreligious Studies at the University of Edinburgh,[4] a member of the Commission on Scottish Devolution[5][6] and a member of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics.[7] She is also a regular contributor to Thought for the Day, Sunday and The Moral Maze on BBC Radio 4, and to The Times, The Scotsman, The Guardian, Sunday Herald.

Early life[edit]

Siddiqui was born in Karachi, Pakistan.[2] The family moved from Pakistan to England in 1965 when she was two years old. Her father was a psychiatrist and moved to England to carry out post-graduate work in Cambridge. His work eventually took the family to Huddersfield when he gained a substantive job. They lived in four successive houses in Huddersfield, moving partly because the family expanded from four to six, and finally into a 1930s detached house in a relatively prosperous area near the town centre. The household was very literary and there were many books in the house. Urdu was generally spoken at home, and so the children became bilingual. Her father also spoke Arabic and worked in Saudi Arabia for a few years, where he was visited by Siddiqui at the age of about 18 together with her sister.[8]

At the age of 11, Siddique attended Salendine Nook High School, a multicultural school, where she excelled in English. She later moved to Greenhead College.[8]

Siddiqui is fluent in French, Arabic and Urdu and is married with three sons.[9]


Siddiqui took her Bachelor of Arts in Arabic and French at the University of Leeds (graduating in 1984), and her Master of Arts in Middle-Eastern Studies and PhD in Classical Islamic Law at the University of Manchester (graduating in 1986 and 1992 respectively). She served as a member of the Advisory Boards for Glasgow's Gallery of Modern Art, Scottish Asian Arts, IB Tauris Religious Studies project and the Journal of the American Academy of Religion.

She has worked at the University of Glasgow since 1996, and in 1998 founded the Centre for the Study of Islam. In 2006, she was appointed Professor of Islamic Studies and Public Understanding, and served as a Senate Assessor on the University Court.

In 2011 Siddiqui became the first person to hold a chair in Islamic and Interreligious Studies at the University of Edinburgh's School of Divinity.[10] She was subsequently appointed Dean International for the Middle East.[10] In 2016, she delivered the Gifford Lectures on Struggle, Suffering and Hope: Explorations in Islamic and Christian Traditions at the University of Aberdeen.[11]

Her areas of specialisation are classical Islamic law, law and gender, early Islamic thought, and contemporary legal and ethical issues in Islam. Professor Siddiqui is the author of 'How to Read the Qur'an' (Granta), a four-volume edited collection 'Islam' (Sage) and 'The Good Muslim' (CUP). She is currently working on two further monographs with Yale University Press and IB Tauris. She has published articles and chapters on classical Islamic Law and also writes and speaks frequently on Christian-Muslim issues.[12]

Siddiqui is patron of The Feast,[13] a pioneering youthwork charity which works for community cohesion between Christian and Muslim young people.[14]


Siddiqui was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in March 2005 and of the Royal Society of Arts in October 2005. She also holds honorary D.Litt.s from the University of Wolverhampton and the University of Leicester. In addition. she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Civil Laws by the University of Huddersfield.

Siddiqui was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2011 Birthday Honours for services to inter-faith relations.[15][16]

In January 2013, Siddiqui was nominated for the Services to Education award at the British Muslim Awards.[17]

She was elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences - International Honorary Member (2019).[18]



  • Siddiqui, Mona (2007). How to read the Qur'an. London: Granta Books. ISBN 978-1-86207-945-8. LCCN 2007531519. OCLC 153559796. OL 16412049M.
  • Siddiqui, Mona, ed. (2010). Islam. London: SAGE. ISBN 978-1-84787-360-6. LCCN 2009936870. OCLC 464585044.
  • Siddiqui, Mona (2012). The good Muslim : reflections on classical Islamic law and theology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-1-139-37934-2. LCCN 2011033316. OCLC 794669898. OL 25005310M.
  • Siddiqui, Mona, ed. (2013). The Routledge reader in Christian-Muslim relations. London: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-68554-2. LCCN 2012045259. OCLC 731925305. OL 27586949M.
  • Siddiqui, Mona (15 April 2013). Christians, Muslims, and Jesus. New Haven. ISBN 978-0-300-18926-1. LCCN 2013934407. OCLC 841216171. OL 26886833M.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  • Siddiqui, Mona (2016). Hospitality and Islam : welcoming in God's name. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300223620.


  1. ^ "Staff profile - Professor Mona Siddiqui". University of Edinburgh. Retrieved 29 March 2017.
  2. ^ a b LEARNING TO COEXIST: Anthony McRoy talks to Professor Mona Siddiqui[permanent dead link] THIRD WAY MARCH 2008
  3. ^ "LEARNING TO COEXIST". ThirdWay. 31. March 2008.
  4. ^ Ruth Gledhill (10 May 2007). "Summit on religious harmony is thrown into discord by Malaysia". The Times. London. Retrieved 13 May 2010.
  5. ^ "Commission members". Commission on Scottish Devolution. Archived from the original on 24 July 2012.
  6. ^ "Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the academic & commentator, Mona Siddiqui". Retrieved 26 October 2012.
  7. ^ "Nuffield Council on Bioethics, Council Members". Nuffield Council on Bioethics. Archived from the original on 22 December 2017. Retrieved 14 April 2017.
  8. ^ a b "The House I Grew Up in, featuring Mona Siddiqui". The House I Grew Up In. 13 August 2008. BBC. BBC Radio 4.
  9. ^ "Curriculum Vitae: Mona Siddiqui, Ph.D, DLitt (HON), FRSE, FRSA" Archived 28 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine, University of Glasgow Theology and Religious Studies staff page
  10. ^ a b "Dean International for the Middle East and Professor of Islamic and Interreligious Studies of the University of Edinburgh visits The British University in Dubai". The British University in Dubai. Archived from the original on 31 March 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2017.
  11. ^ "The Gifford Lectures". University of Aberdeen.
  12. ^ Jesus, Islam and interfaith humbleness interview on
  13. ^ "The Feast Homepage". The Feast.
  14. ^ "Patrons". The Feast.
  15. ^ "Supplement 59808". The London Gazette. 11 June 2011. p. 12.
  16. ^ "OBE 'humbles' Siddiqui". The Herald. 11 June 2011.
  17. ^ "Winners honoured at British Muslim Awards". Asian Image. 31 January 2013. Retrieved 1 November 2015.
  18. ^ "2019 Fellows and International Honorary Members with their affiliations at the time of election". Archived from the original on 2 March 2020.

External links[edit]

Two-part interview conducted by Henk de Berg (2018).