His work focuses on the failure of the Enlightenment in the Islamic world and the search for an Arab identity in modernity. Who determines Muslim history? What kind of technical or social innovations are allowed and with what justification? Al-Jabri holds the view that the changes brought by modernity to the Islamic world also bring about change in the religion of Islam. In fact, this can be observed everywhere. Deconstruction of Arabic thought The discussion that al-Jabri has set into motion centres on the individual and rational interpretation of sacred texts.
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His great project, The Critique of Arab Reason, which won him praise as well as criticism, is the most renowned modern work of philosophy in the Arabic-language. Al-Jabri established himself as a leading thinker, devoting his life to analysis, questioning and identifying solutions to the problems of the Arab world.
As a child, he received a traditional education from his grandfather, who taught him Quranic verses and some prayers. At the kuttab, Al-Jabri also memorized and learned to recite a significant portion of the Quran. Following his schooling at the kuttab, his uncle enrolled him in a French school, where he would spend two years studying.
Studying at a French school was seen with suspicion at that time. Many Moroccans considered it as demonstrating a lack of patriotism. Thus, when the Al Nahdah Muhammadiyya School, which was established by Moroccan nationalists and which offered instruction in Arabic, opened, Al-Jabri joined it and finished his education there. In , Al-Jabri accepted a position as a primary school teaching assistant at the Muhammadiyya School in Casablanca.
This experience qualified him for the Professional Proficiency Certificate in One year later, in , he obtained his baccalaureate and began working with Al Alam, an Arabic-language newspaper. However, Al-Jabri did not stay on staff long, but rather moved to Damascus, where he obtained a certificate in general education. Henceforth, Al-Jabri resumed his job in education, working variously as a high school teacher, a school inspector, a director of pedagogy for philosophy teachers.
He returned to university, earning a doctoral degree in , and ended his career as a professor of philosophy and Islamic thought. Mohammed Abed Al-Jabri was involved in political activities, unions and partisan journalism.
He was arrested twice; first in the course of the clashes between NUPF and the government in , then again following the uprising of March 23, However, Al-Jabri was quickly released on both occasions due to lack of circumstantial evidence. Mohammed Abed A-Jabri died in Later on, Al-Jabri decided to rework his paper and to expand it into a book-length project.
When he finished the book in , Dr. Najib Baladi, his professor at the time, advised him to submit it as his doctoral dissertation. Al-Jabri would extend this unique method to his studies of a number of other Arab-Islamic figures, including Averroes and Avicenna. In , he published these studies in a volume titled We And the Turath.
Al-Jabri spent most of his life studying the Arab-Islamic heritage. He crowned his intellectual legacy with his major project The Critique of Arab Reason. To this end, he diverged from most of his contemporaries who understood the Arab renaissance in terms of economics and politics, proposing solutions accordingly.
Al-Jabri, on the other hand, envisioned the renaissance from a totally different angle, that of epistemology.
Mohammed Abed al-Jabri
Profession Inspector and educational director for philosophy teachers. The most important steps in his career — at the age of 18 he taught pre-school and primary school classes at the Muhammadiyya School in Casablanca, after the classes of the secondary school were closed upon the expulsion of Mohammed V and the following wave of protest and uprising against the French colonist. At that time he established contacts with the Moroccan oppositionist Mehdi Ben Barka, who was killed in October enrolled as student of philosophy at the Faculty of Humanities, Rabat. June obtained a Bachelors in Philosophy Licence. June obtained a certificate for an extra fourth year of philosophy study. He continued to work at the newspaper, but on voluntary basis.
Mohammed Abed Al Jabri
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