Conference organized by the department of religious science of Università Cattolica di Milano

Ce colloque est une activité du groupe de recherche thématique de Pluriel basé à Milan : Pour une dé-radicalisation préventive. La reconfiguration des humanités dans une approche inter-religieuse. (Coordination : Paolo Branca et Marco Demichelis)

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ABSTRACT (English)

Religions have regained a considerable role in the public space, to an extent that was hardly imaginable until recently. With the beginning of the century, religiosity seems to consist in the  flourishing of beliefs and belongings – however, this occurs in the context of secularized societies, with the risk of ephemeral ‘DIY (do it yourself)’ and unscrupulous spirituality borrowing “updated” symbols from traditional beliefs, for purposes that often do not relate to the experience of a ‘genuine’ religiosity.

The emptiness that has arisen with the crisis of the great secular ideologies of the last century cannot be filled by a trivializing appeal to religious-racial identities often results in an increasingly widespread and worrisome religious illiteracy as well as it in ‘politicization’.

Understanding these dynamics does not only means describing and analyzing them, but involves the delicate task of imagining possible strategies to channel useful energies in initiatives aimed at countering problematic deviances.


Università Cattolica di Milano | October, 9th 2019

Room NI.010-011, h 9.30-17.30
Via Nirone, 15 – Milano





h 9.30/17.30 : Welcome Introduction

  • Angelo Bianchi, Dean of the Faculty of Letters and Philosophy
  • Marco Rizzi, Director of the Department of Religious Sciences


h 10

First Session: History

  • Paolo Branca, “Rethinking Albert Hourani’s Arabic Thought in the Liberal Age 37 years later” (in French)
  • Mohamed-Ali Mostfa , Maître de conférences sur le monde arabo-musulman et les représentations interculturelles – Université Catholique de Lyon, Le bricolage religieux. Entre ambivalence et domestication des symboles
  • Fr. Paolo NICELLI, Pime – Venerable Ambrosian Library, Islãm and Religious Plurality in South-East Asia

h 11.30

Second Session: is Past coming back?


  • Fabio Introini, Giulia Mezzetti, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore & Fondazione ISMU, An ecological persepctive for exploring jihadist radicalization processes. A theoretical proposal
  • Michele Esposti-Ongaro, PHD, University of Pavia/Pluriel – Università Cattolica of Milano, History Teaching and Reorientation of History in the Public School Textbooks of the Gulf Countries. The Case of Kuwait.
  • Paolo Gonzaga, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore – Pluriel, Islamic Radical Literature: from the Muslim Brothers to Isis.


h. 13.00-14.30
Lunch buffet


Third Session: Experiences of education and formation


  • Antonio Cuciniello, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore & Fondazione ISMU, Interpreting the Muslim World in some Italian Textbooks
  • Marco Demichelis, University of Navarra, Education = The ‘Ijazah’ of Education. New Identities and History for a non-radicalized perspective of Islam in Europe
  • Davide Tacchini, F.-Schiller-Universität, Jena, Germany: “Human Mobility, Refugees and Reconciliation in the MENA Region”.
  • Khaled Qatam, former Prof. of Arabic, University of Parma, Italy: « The image of the current Islamic guides and its reflection in the new Muslim generations”



Conclusions and perspectives

Mons. Khaled AKASHEH, Bureau chief for Islam at the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue
Le Document d’Abou Dhabi sur la Fraternité humaine, pour la paix mondiale et la coexistence commune signée par le pape François et le Grand Imam d’al-Azhar