A British Pakistani who grew up in Essex, Maajid Nawaz was recruited into political Islam as a teenager. He joined Hizb al-Tahrir (the Liberation Party) where he played a central role in the shaping and dissemination of an aggressive anti-West narrative. Arriving in Egypt the day before 9/11 his views soon led to his arrest, imprisonment and mental torture, before being thrown into solitary confinement in a Cairo jail reserved for political prisoners. There, while mixing with everyone from the assassins of Egypt’s president to Liberal reformists, he was adopted by Amnesty International as a Prisoner of Conscience, underwent an intellectual transformation and on his release after four years, he publically renounced the Islamist ideology that had defined his life, though he remains a Muslim. Maajid will be interviewed by writer and journalist Shiv Malik. They will discuss his journey and the work he now does to undermine the beliefs he had once been prepared to die for.
This is an event held by Bristol Festival of Ideas