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George F. Hourani papers

 Collection — Box: 1-40
Identifier: 22/5F/1010
This collection contains materials from George F. Hourani, professor of Philosophy, specializing in Near Eastern History and Islamic philosophy. Included are correspondence, teachings, writings, Middle Eastern Studies research, and departmental files from both the University of Michigan and the University at Buffalo.

Dates

  • 1927-1984

Creator

Language of Materials

Collection material in English, French, Arabic, German and Spanish.

Terms of Access

The George F. Hourani Papers, 1927-1984 are open for research.

Please note: Series I. Personal, Subseries A, Personal Correspondence, is restricted due to the personal nature of the documents. Please contact the archivist for more information.

Copyright

Copyright is held by the State University of New York at Buffalo, University Archives. Copyright of papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and the University Archives before publishing quotations from materials in the collection. Most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.

Extent

16 Linear Feet (36 manuscript boxes, 2 half boxes, 2 card boxes)

Overview

Collection of materials from George F. Hourani, professor of Philosophy, specializing in Near Eastern History and Islamic philosophy. Includes correspondence, teachings, writings, Middle Eastern Studies research, and departmental files from both the University of Michigan and the University at Buffalo.

Biographical Note

George Fadlo Hourani was one of the preeminent scholars of Islamic philosophy and Near Eastern History. He authored numerous articles as well as several books including: Arab Seafaring in the Indian Ocean in the Ancient and Early Medieval Times (1963), Ethical Value (1956, reprinted in 1969), Islamic Rationalism: the Ethics of 'Abd al-Jabbar'(1971) and Reason and Tradition in Islamic Ethics (published posthumously in 1985).

Throughout his career, Dr. Hourani participated in many national and international professional organizations. He was often celebrated for his professional insight into Middle Eastern culture. In 1991, UB Philosophy Department Chair Peter Hare stated that George Hourani was "unquestionably the leading specialist in Islamic thought in the United States. He had no peer."

1913
Born in Manchester, England to parents of Lebanese descent.
1927-1932
Attended the Mill Hill School in London where he studied Classics.
1936
Received his B.A. in classics and philosophy from the Balliol College at Oxford University.
1936-1937
Spent a year studying Arabic with tutors in Beirut.
1939
Received his Ph.D. from Princeton University after writing his dissertation, Arab Navigation in the Indian Ocean in the 9th and 10th Centuries A.D.
1939-1948
Lecturer of philosophy and classics at the Government Arab College in Jerusalem
1940
Married Celeste Habib in Heliopolis, Egypt.
1950
Began his 17 year tenure at the Department of Near Eastern Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
1956
Received the Ford Foundation Area Research Fellowship in Cairo, Egypt for writing on Islamic philosophy.
1963
Recipient of the Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship for writing on Islamic philosophy in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
1967
Came to the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he was a professor in the Department of Philosophy until his retirement in 1982.
1976-1980
Chairman of the Department of Philosophy.
1980
One of several Near Eastern scholars to be invited to the White House by President Jimmy Carter to discuss U.S. relations with the Muslim world.
1982
Received the title of "Distinguished Professor of Islamic Thought and Civilization."
Retired from the University at Buffalo.
1984
Passed away at the age of 71 in Buffalo, NY.

Arrangement

This collection is divided into five series.

I. Personal; includes housing information, notes from George Hourani's early education and his personal writing. Please note: Subseries A, Personal correspondence, is restricted due to the personal nature of the documents. Please contact the archivist for more information.

II. Correspondence was processed by a previous staff archivist. The archivist's organization was retained; original order is unknown. Series includes professional correspondence, organized by both subject and author and correspondence with students.

III. Writings contains manuscripts, essays, articles, encyclopedia entries, book reviews, and research pertaining to works written by George Hourani.

IV. Teachings includes early teachings at the Government Arab College in Jerusalem, coursework and departmental files from the University of Michigan and the University at Buffalo, and lectures given at various institutions. Folders labeled as "coursework" signifies a specific topic which may have been used in several classes.

V. Research for Middle Eastern studies includes collected materials used for research. Also includes newsletters and conferences related to the study of relations in the Middle East.

Acquisition Information

The collection was received by John Sheffer, lawyer for the Hourani estate, on September 30, 1987 as accession #87-050.

Accruals and Additions

No further accruals are expected to this collection.

Processing Information

Processed by Molly Dahl, May-July 2005.

Creator

Source

Title
Finding Aid for the George F. Hourani papers
Status
completed
Author
Finding aid prepared by Molly Dahl.
Date
2006
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
und

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository

Contact:
420 Capen Hall
Buffalo New York 14260-1674 US
716-645-2916
716-645-3714 (Fax)