Assuming no prior knowledge, The Qur'an: A Philosophical Guide is an introduction to the Qur'an from a philosophical point of view.
Oliver Leaman's guide begins by familiarizing the readers with the core theories and controversies surrounding the text. Covering key theoretical approaches and focusing on its style and language, Leaman introduces the Qur'an as an aesthetic object and as an organization. The book discusses the influence of the Qur'an on culture and covers its numerous interpreters from the modernizers and popularizers to the radicals.
He presents a close reading of the Qur'an, carefully and clearly presenting a variety of philosophical interpretation verse-by-verse. Explaining what the philosopher is arguing, relating the argument to a particular verse, and providing the reader with the means to be part of the discussion, this section includes:
- Translated extracts from the text
- A range of national backgrounds and different cultural and historic contexts spanning the classical and modern period, the Middle East, Europe and North America
- Philosophical interpretations ranging from the most Islamophobe to the extreme apologist
- A variety of schools of thought and philosophers such as Peripatetic, Illuminationist, and Sufi.
Written with clarity and authority and showing the distinct ways a variety of thinkers have sought to understand the text, The Qur'an: A Philosophical Guide introduces readers to the value of interpreting the Qur'an philosophically.