Ali Gomaa: is an Egyptian Islamic scholar, jurist, and public figure. He specializes in Islamic Legal Theory. He served as the eighteenth Grand Mufti of Egypt (2003–2013) through Dar al-Ifta al-Misriyyah . He is one of the internationally most respected Islamic jurists according to a 2008 U.S. News & World Report report and The National and “a highly promoted champion of moderate Islam,” gender equality, and an “object of hatred among Islamists” according to The New Yorker.
Education: Gomaa graduated from high school in 1969, at which point he enrolled at Ain Shams University in Egypt’s capital, Cairo. Having already begun to memorize the Quran, he delved deeper into his studies of Islam, studying Hadith and Shafi’i jurisprudence in his free time while at university. After completing a B.Comm. (Bachelor of Commerce) at Ain Shams in 1973, Gomaa enrolled in Cairo’s al-Azhar University, the oldest active Islamic institution of higher learning in the world. He received a second Bachelor’s degree (B.A.) from al-Azhar, then an M.A., and finally a Ph.D with highest honors in Juristic Methodology (usul al-fiqh) in 1988. Since he had not gone through the al-Azhar High School curriculum, he took it upon himself in his first year at the college to study and memorize all of the basic texts, which many of the other students had already covered.
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