Skip navigation

Ahmed Ragab

Ahmed Ragab  
Assistant Professor of Science and Religion, Harvard Divinity School
Director of the Science, Religion, and Culture Program
Person Type: 

Dr. Ragab is a neuro-psychiatrist, a historian of science and medicine, and a scholar of science and religion.

He received his M.D. from Cairo University School of Medicine in 2005. Ragab was trained in epidemiology and medical sociology, and worked on infectious and epidemic diseases. He has a special interest in gender, ethnic and religion-based disparities in disease burden, and in the gender, ethnic, and religious dimensions of treatment modalities, and healthcare policy. He worked with the French Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale (National Institute of Health and Medical Research), the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (National Center for Scientific Research) on various topics related to infectious, endemic and epidemic diseases specifically, H1N1, H1N5, Hepatitis C and HIV. Some of these projects include: "Public Policies, Professional Practices and Agents' Conduct Regarding the Risk of Avian Flu (Egypt, France, India, Niger, UK, Vietnam)" from 2006-2009. Along with that project he worked on similar projects on H1N1 in 2009, on Hepatitis C and HIV from 2008-2010.

In 2010 he received his Ph.D. in History and Philosophy of Science from the Ecole Pratiques des Hautes Etudes in Paris. Ragab first joined Harvard as a postdoctoral fellow, and then became a lecturer at the Department of the History of Science. In July 2011, he joined Harvard Divinity School as the first Richard T. Watson Assistant Professor of Science and Religion.

Some of his most recent publications include “History of Science” in Women and Islamic Cultures: Disciplinary Paradigms and Approaches and “Prophetic Traditions and Modern Medicine in the Middle East: Resurrection, Reinterpretation, and Reconstruction” in the Journal of the American Oriental Society. His first book is Medicine, Religion, and Charity: A History of Medieval Islamic Hospitals (forthcoming in 2015 from Cambridge University Press). He is also working on two book projects: In the Name of God the Healer: Prophetic Medicine in the Medieval and Modern Middle East and, with Katharine Park, Knowledge on the Move: Cultures of Science in the Medieval World.

Ragab also works on questions of gender and sexuality in the Middle East and Islamic worlds, and writes on contemporary questions at the foundations of science, religion, and culture. He is currently working on a research project on perceptions of bodies, genders, and sexualities in medical, religious, and cultural views in the Islamic world.

He was elected a member of the Commission on History of Science and Technology in Islamic Societies and a member of the International Society for Science and Religion.