Meet the First Malay-Malaysian Lecturer in the University of Oxford

Published by Afterschool.my on Dec 12, 2019, 04:54 pm

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The University of Oxford, one of the longest-standing higher institutions in the world, has received worldwide media recognition for its many achievements and top rankings in the QS World Rankings of Top Universities.

Many celebrities, past British prime ministers and notable alumni have attended this prestigious university over many centuries. Its most notable alumni that you may know of include Emma Watson, Dr. Seuss, Stephen Hawking, David Cameron and the infamous Rowan Atkinson, known for his role as Mr. Bean.

Over the years many students have gone to the University of Oxford for its high reputation, and as for Malaysians, one particular student there was able to become a permanent teaching staff at the prestigious university.  

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Dato Afifi Al-Akiti, (also known as Shaykh Afifi), born in 1976, was able to have a career as a lecturer in the University of Oxford. He is the first Malaysian to ever receive a permanent teaching position at the University of Oxford, and it no doubt brings much pride among the Malaysian population across the globe!

He currently is a Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (KFAS) Fellow in Islamic Studies in the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies and also, a centre lecturer in Islamic Studies at the Faculty of Theology at Oxford. Outside of teaching in the UK, Dato Afifi is also a visiting professor at the Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM)  in Shah Alam, Malaysia.

Dato Afifi started his academic studies in Malaysia and had the opportunity to move to the UK to advance his tertiary education in the Queen’s University Belfast. He received his first degree in Scholastic Philosophy and History of Science. He was able to further his studies in Oxford through his many academic achievements and scholarships given during his degree, and completed a DPhil in Medieval Arabic Philosophy in Oxford in 2008. 

Throughout his career, he has received global widespread media recognition for his teachings, career in Oxford and published works. In 2010, he was appointed privy councillor at the State of Perak by the Crown Prince of Perak, Raje Dr. Nazrin Shah. Also, in the same year, he was listed as the 500 Most Influential Muslims. One of his most notable works throughout his career that was somewhat shaped the Islamic world is ’Defending the Transgressed by Censuring the Reckless Against the Killing of Civilians‘. His work was praised by scholars all around the world and in Islam, and gained a massive readership on the internet, and due to its huge online popularity it was published as a book by Aqsa Press (Birmingham). 

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With these substantial achievements gained over the decades, Dato Dr. Afifi Al-Akiti has certainly brought the utmost pride among Malaysians as he continues to teach people regardless of age, gender, race, class and religion, around the world about the ways of Islam. Dato Afifi will no doubt remain a worldwide influential scholar, trained theologian and philologist working in one of the most prestigious universities in the world. We do hope that his academic feat continues to inspire Malaysian scholars in the future! 

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