One of the world's foremost commentators on religious affairs on the history (and destiny) of the world's most misunderstood religion. In the public mind, Islam is a religion of extremes: it is the world's fastest growing faith; more than three-quarters of the world's refugees are Islamic; it has produced government by authoritarian monarchies in Saudi Arabia and ultra-republicans in Iran. Whether we are reading about civil war in Algeria or Afghanistan, the struggle for the soul of Turkey, or political turmoil in Pakistan or Malaysia, the Islamic context permeates all these situations. Karen Armstrong's elegant and concise book traces how Islam grew from the other religions of the book, Judaism and Christianity; introduces us to the character of Muhammed; and demonstrates that for much of its history, the religion has been a force for enlightenment that promoted liberties for women and allowed the arts and sciences to flourish. ISLAM shows how this progressive legacy is today often set aside as the faith struggles to come to terms with the economic and political weakness of most of its believers and with the forces of modernity itself.
islam a short history
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The purpose of this book is to provide the Western reader with a positivenderstanding of Islam, of its origins, its history and its beliefs; but its hoped that there may also be something of value in it for the Muslimeader. It is based on the belief that Muhammad was a prophet chosen by Godor a particular task, and also that God was behind the spread of Islamhroughout the world. At the same time, this book accepts the main principlesf the western intellectual outlook, including its historical criticism; andonsequently departs from some of the traditional ideas of Muslims about theistory of their religion. Contents include coverage of the beginnings ofslam, the political history of the Islamic world, the teachings of theur'an, Islamic theology and the role of Islam in the modern world.
Islamic South Asia has become a focal point in academia. Where did Muslims come from? How did they fare in interacting with Hindu cultures? How did they negotiate identity as ruling and ruled minorities and majorities? Part I covers early Muslim expansion and the formative phase in context of initial cultural encounter (app. 700-1300). Part II views the establishment of Muslim empire, cultures oscillating between Islamic and Islamicate, centralised and regionalised power (app. 1300-1700). Part III is composed in the backdrop of regional centralisation, territoriality and colonial rule, displaying processes of integration and differentiation of Muslim cultures in colonial setting (app. 1700-1930). Tensions between Muslim pluralism and singularity evolving in public sphere make up the fourth cluster (app. 1930-2002).
Reflecting recent global developments, the second edition of thisilluminating introduction to Islamic history expands its coverageof the Qur’an, Sufism, and Muslim views on human rights,including the rights of women. An expanded new edition of this concise, illuminatingintroduction to Islam, written by one of the field’s leadingscholars Spans Islamic history from the life of Muhammad and the birthof Islamic ideals, through Islam’s phenomenal geographicalexpansion and cultural development, to the creation of modernstates and its role in today’s global society Features expanded coverage of the Qur’an, Sufism, andMuslim views on human rights, including the rights of women Includes fascinating vignettes of Islamic life, representingmainstream Muslim viewpoints on issues of global concern Explores the complex interrelationships of cultural, political,and ideological developments woven throughout Islamic history,drawing on specific examples including current developments inPakistan
Gathers fifteen essays on Islam, covering its orgins, its divisions and their doctrines, mosques, Islamic government, and its relation to women, Judaism, Christianity, and the United States.
Muslims are neither new nor foreign to the United States. They have been a vital presence in North America since the 16th century. Muslims in America unearths their history, documenting the lives of African, Middle Eastern, South Asian, European, black, white, Hispanic and other Americans who have been followers of Islam. The book begins with the tale of Job Ben Solomon, a 18th century African American Muslim slave, and goes on to chart the stories of sodbusters in North Dakota, African American converts to Islam in the 1920s, Muslim barkeepers in Toledo, the post-1965 wave of professional immigrants from Asia and Africa, and Muslim Americans after 9/11. The book reveals the richness of Sunni, Shi'a, Sufi and other forms of Islamic theology, ethics, and rituals in the United States by illustrating the way Islamic faith has been imagined and practiced in the everyday lives of individuals. Muslims in America recovers the place of Muslims in the larger American story, too. Showing how Muslim American men and women participated in each era of U.S. history, the book explores how they have both shaped and have been shaped by larger historical trends such as the abolition movement, Gilded Age immigration, the Great Migration of African Americans, urbanization, religious revivalism, the feminist movement, and the current war on terror. It also shows how, from the very beginning of American history, Muslim Americans have been at once a part of their local communities, their nation, and the worldwide community of Muslims. The first single-author history of Muslims in America from colonial times to the present, this book fills a huge gap and provides invaluable background on one of the most poorly understood groups in the United States. Religion in American Life explores the evolution, character, and dynamic of organized religion in America from 1500 to the present day. Written by distinguished historians of religion, these books weave together the varying stories that compose the religious fabric of the United States, from Puritanism to alternative religious practices. Primary source material coupled with handsome illustrations and lucid text make these books essential in any exploration of America's diverse nature. Each book includes a chronology, suggestions for further reading, and an index.
Karen Armstrong's concise yet compelling investigation into the history of myth takes us from the Palaeolithic period and the mythology of the hunters right up to the 'Great Western Transformation' of the last 500 years. She shows us that the history of myth is the history of humanity, and our stories and beliefs, our curiosity and attempts to understand the world, link us to our ancestors and each other. Myths help us make sense of the universe, and of ourselves. Armstrong's characteristically insightful and eloquent book serves as a brilliant and thought-provoking introduction to myth in the broadest sense - and why we dismiss it only at our peril.