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18 February 2020

Nile University Holds Seminar on Love and Tolerance in Collaboration with Ufuk Dialogue

Nile University Holds Seminar on Love and Tolerance in Collaboration with Ufuk Dialogue

Nile University of Nigeria in collaboration with UFUK Dialogue, held a seminar that was themed "countering violent extremism for peaceful coexistence" on February 17. The event’s keynote speaker was Dr. Scott C. Alexander (Associate Professor of Islamic Studies; Director, Catholic-Muslim Studies at the Catholic Theological Union).

Delivering the opening address of the program was the Vice-Chancellor of Nile University, Prof. Osman Nuri Aras, who discussed the importance of peaceful co-existence among people and effective use of resources, such as education, in ensuring a more unified community.   

Subsequently, Dr. Alexander, giving the keynote lecture, spoke about the tendency of humans to group people into various social categories and treat them based on those categorizations. The two most popular categories in this regard, he continued, are the “Us” and 'Them" groups. The first group, "Us," refers to people who share the same ethnicity, religion, or other trait with the individual making the categorization. The “Them” group, on the other hand, refers to people that do not share the relevant features with the person in question. According to Dr. Alexander, people tend to behave favorably toward others in the “Us” group and negatively toward those deemed to belong to the “Them” category. 

However, he stated, for true societal progress to be achieved, individuals need to learn to accept and embrace other people’s differences. Following Dr. Alexander’s lecture, an interactive session commenced, during which the members of the audience weighed in on the event’s main topic—countering violent extremism. Dr. Alexander also fielded the questions of the audience during this period. 

The program ended with a vote of thanks by Nile University’s DVC Admin, Prof. Steve Adeshina, who commended Dr. Alexander for his insightful and educative lecture.  


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