Muslim World Tour opens eyes

Arts student Melinda Pipe is one of 12 humanities students to participate in the Muslim World Study tour.

Arts student Melinda Pipe looks forward to exploring different permutations of Islamic culture when she embarks on a one-month Muslim World Study Tour this month.

“Through my studiesI’ve come toknow that Islam is not monolithic, but is found in many diverse people and cultures around the world.

“I’m excited to see the different expressions of Islam, both past and present, in the places we visit and the people we meet,’’ she said.

Melinda is one of 12 students from the School of Humanities who will travel to Malaysia, Turkey, Spain and Morocco.

Led by Associate Professor Halim Rane, this is the fourth year the tour has been held and gives students a significant international experience as part of their degree.

Spending a week in each country, the students will tour mosques and other places of worship, museums, historical sites, markets and other places of social, political and economic significance.

“The students will also meet representatives of prominent political parties and university academics and engage with a diversity of people whose roots are in Islamic civilisation,’’ Associate Professor Rane said.

For Melinda, who has her sights set on postgraduate study, the trip will provide the basis for her honours research.

“While Western and Islamic civilisations are often thought of in terms ofopposition anddivision, there are and have been periods and places ofpeacefulcoexistence throughout history. I’d like to explore these positive relationships, and what we can learn from them to further encourage harmonious coexistence in our ownmulticultural societiestoday.”