French President Emmanuel Macron and Sherin Khankan. Picture: Private

Sherin Khankan, the founder of Copenhagen’s first female-led mosque, author, activist and the first Scandinavian female imam—an Islamic leader—will visit the University of Helsinki on August 31. She will give a lecture on “Women and the Future of Islam. Islamic Feminism and Muslim Reform in the West. ‘9 Theses of Muslim Reform’ based on Islamic Principles of Justice.”

Khankan is also a founder of an NGO called The Exitcircle—Against mental violence and social control. Today, she is the CEO and responsible for 40 volunteer workers and seven self-help groups in Denmark combatting mental abuse.

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In 2016 Sherin Khankan and a group of Muslim scholars and activists launched Scandinavia’s first mosque (The Mariam Mosque) with female imams conducting Friday prayer, Islamic ceremonies (interfaith marriages, divorces ect.), offering Islamic spiritual care and leading an Islamic Academy. The Mariam Mosque works to challenge patriarchal structures in the leadership of religious worship and education and to challenge men’s monopoly on the interpretation of the Quran.

In 2016 Sherin Khankan led the first Friday prayer in The Mariam Mosque in Copenhagen. Sherin Khankan made international headlines becoming Scandinavia’s first female imam and in 2016 she came on BBC’s list of 100 leading female pioneers in the world.

Sherin Khankan is the author of several books on Islam in Europe and in 2017 she published “La Femme est l’avenir de l’Islam – Le combat d’une Imame en France” (Women are the Future of Islam). The book has been sold to England and Spain and this week the book is published in Finnish as well.

In March 2018 Sherin Khankan was invited to Paris by the French President Emmanuel Macron for a private conversation about reform Islam in Europe. The President had read her book.

Sherin Khankan will receive The Global Hope Award and be titled a “Hero” by The Global Hope Coalition in New York at an event with state leaders from different parts in the world on September, 27.

Sherin Khakans open lecture at the University of Helsinki

“Women and the Future of Islam. Islamic Feminism and Muslim Reform in the West. ‘9 Theses of Muslim Reform’ Based on Islamic Principles of Justice.”

Friday, August 31, 2018, at 9:00-11:00.

Room 210 at the Swedish School of Social Science at the University of Helsinki
Yrjö-Koskisenkatu 4, Helsinki

Lecturer Sherin Khankan holds an MA in Sociology of Religion and Philosophy from the University of Copenhagen and is specialized in contemporary Islamic activism in the Middle East. She studied Arabic and Islamic spiritual care and is also a cognitive psychotherapist, activist and author of four books.