Skip to main content

Professeure Lynda Clarke, PhD

Professor, Religions and Cultures

Office: S-R 301  
R Annex,
2050 Mackay
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 2076
Availability: By appointment

Lynda Clarke joined the Department of Religions and Cultures in 1998 after having held positions in the Department of Religion at Bard College, New York, and  Department of Asian and Middle East Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research interests include Shiism, women, law (especially in relation to gender), and Islam in the West, and she works chiefly in the geographical regions of the Arab Middle East and Iran. Her current focus in the area of Shiism is on Sunni-Shiite relations. Recent publications include “Belief and unbelief in Shīʿī thought” in Encyclopedia of Islam, (Brill, 2017); "A Shiite Clerical View of Other Religions and the Lebanese Nation-State: Muḥammad Jawād Maghniyah (1904-1979)" (Muslim World, 110, ii [2020]: 176-194) and "Non-Veiled Muslim Women in the West: Sentiments and Views" (Muslim World111, iii  [2021]: 336-357). Prof. Clarke is currently working on a SSHRC-funded project presenting the narratives of forced migrants from Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq and Syria to Canada.  


PhD (McGill University)

Research interests

Shiism, Sunni-Shiite relations
Women and Islam
Islamic Law
Islam in the West



Regional traditions

Religions of Iran (Shiite Islam)

Field areas

Women, Gender, and Sexuality
Contemporary Religions and Popular Culture

Some representative publications

Meaningful Journeys: Narratives of Migration from Muslim-Majority Countries. Co-authored with L. Darwish, forthcoming (under contract with McGill-Queens Press for series, Refugee and Forced Migration Studies).

With P. Cross: Muslim and Canadian Family Law: A Comparative Primer. CCMW, 2006. Translated as Lois musulmanes et canadiennes de la famille, 2007.

Shiite Heritage: Essays in Classical and Modern Traditions. Edited & translated with 5 introductory essays. Global Press, SUNY, 2001.

  “"Non-Veiled Muslim Women in the West: Sentiments and Views"”, Muslim World Vol. 111, no. 
3 (June 2021).

 “A Shiite Clerical View of Other Religions and the Lebanese Nation-State:  Muḥammad Jawād Maghniyah (1904-1979)”, Muslim World, Vol. 110, No. 2 (June 2020): 176-194.

“Belief and unbelief in Shīʿī thought”, Encyclopedia of Islam, 3d ed. Brill, 2017.

‘Aql (Reason) in Modern Shiite Thought: The Example of Muḥammad Jawād Maghniyya (1904–79)” in Essays in Islamic Philology, History, and Philosophy. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2016.

“Women in Islam” and “Case Study: Two Muslim Women in North America”, pp. 213-250 & 357-366 in Women and Religious Traditions. Edited by L. Anderson & P. Dickey-Young. Don Mills, Ont.; New York: Oxford University Press, 2014; revised and expanded ed. of Women and Religious Traditions, pp. 193-224 & 322-328, OUP 2010; revised ed. in turn of Women and Religious Traditions, OUP 2004.

“Fundamentalism and Shiism”, pp. 163-180 in Fundamentalism: Perspectives on a Contested Tradition. Edited by S. Wood and D. Watt. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 2014.

“Fundamentalism, Khomeinism, and the Islamic Republic of Iran”, pp. 181-198 in Fundamentalism: Perspectives on a Contested Tradition. Edited by S. Wood and D. Watt. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 2014.

Women in Niqab Speak: A Study of the Niqab in Canada Toronto: CCMW, 2013.  62 pp. Translated into French as Paroles de femmes qui portent le niqab. Étude sur le niqab au Canada. Also available at

“Asking Questions About Shariah: Lessons from Ontario”, pp. 153-191 in Debating Sharia: Islam, Gender Politics and Family Law Arbitration. Edited by J. Selby and A. Kortweg. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2012.

“Iddah” [Wife’s dower: law], Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World, ed. J. Esposito, 2009.

“Ismah” [Inerrancy: theology], Encyclopedia of Religion, ed. L. Jones, M. Eliade & C. Adams. Macmillan, 2004.

“Faith and Unfaith in Pre-Occultation Shiism: A Study in Theology and Social History”. Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations 15:1 (January 2004), 109-123. Also pp. 97-112 in Islam and Other Religions. Edited by I. Omar. London: Routledge, 2006.

“The Universe Alive: Nature in the Masnavi of Jalal al-Din Rumi”, pp. 159-181 in Thinking about the Environment: Our Debt to the Classical and Medieval Past. Edited by T. Robinson and L. Westra. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2002. Also pp. 39-65 in Islam and Ecology. Edited by R. Foltz, F. Denny & A. Baharuddin. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003. Trans. into Persian, pp. 38-59 in Islām ū muḥīṭ-i zīst (Mashhad: Intishārāt-i Jihād-i Dānishgāhī).

“The Rise and Fall of Esoterism (taqiyah) in Shiite Islam”, pp. 46-63 in Reason and Inspiration in Islam: Theology, Philosophy and Mysticism in Muslim Thought. Edited by T. Lawson. London: I.B. Tauris, 2003.

“Hijab according to the Hadith: Text and Interpretation”, pp. 214-286 in The Muslim Veil in North America: Issues and Debates. Edited by S. Alvi, H. Hoodfar & S. McDonough. Toronto: Women’s Press, 2003.

Teaching activities

Courses for 2021-2

Fall 2021: Reli 383, Women and Religion Islam (undergraduate; see Concordia course schedule)

Winter 2022: Islam and the Other (graduate; see Concordia course schedule)

Back to top

© Concordia University