In his first book since What Went Wrong? Bernard Lewis examines the historical roots of the resentments that dominate the Islamic world today and that are increasingly being expressed in acts of terrorism. He looks at the theological origins of political Islam and takes us through the rise of militant Islam in Iran, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, examining the impact of radical Wahhabi proselytizing, and Saudi oil money, on the rest of the Islamic world. The Crisis of Islam ranges widely through thirteen centuries of history, but in particular it charts the key events of the twentieth century leading up to the violent confrontations of today: the creation of the state of Israel, the Cold War, the Iranian Revolution, the Soviet defeat in Afghanistan, the Gulf War, and the September 11th attacks on the United States. While hostility toward the West has a long and varied history in the lands of Islam, its current concentration on America is new. So too is the cult of the suicide bomber. Brilliantly disentangling the crosscurrents of Middle Eastern history from the rhetoric of its manipulators, Bernard Lewis helps us understand the reasons for the increasingly dogmatic rejection of modernity by many in the Muslim world in favor of a return to a sacred past. Based on his George Polk Award–winning article for The New Yorker, The Crisis of Islam is essential reading for anyone who wants to know what Usama bin Ladin represents and why his murderous message resonates so widely in the Islamic world. From the Hardcover edition.
the crisis of islam
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This balanced and sensitive study draws on a wide range of original sources to provide a scholarly yet highly readable account of the period, exploring the delicate interplay between religion and politics and the roots of the conflict that led to the Crisis of Succession and Sunni/Shii schism.
In the early sixteenth century, the political landscape of West Asia was completely transformed: of the previous four major powers, only one - the Ottoman Empire - continued to exist. Ottoman survival was, in part, predicated on transition to a new mode of kingship, enabling its transformation from regional dynastic sultanate to empire of global stature. In this book, Christopher Markiewicz uses as a departure point the life and thought of Idris Bidlisi (1457-1520), one of the most dynamic scholars and statesmen of the period. Through this examination, he highlights the series of ideological and administrative crises in the fifteenth-century sultanates of Islamic lands that gave rise to this new conception of kingship and became the basis for sovereign authority not only within the Ottoman Empire but also across other Muslim empires in the early modern period.
All the world’s religions are experiencing rapid change due to a confluence of social and economic global forces. Factors such as the pervasive intrusion of globalizing political and economic developments, polarized and morally equivalent presentations seen in the media, and the sense of surety demanded in and promised by a culture dominated by science are some of the factors that have placed extreme pressure on all religious traditions. This has stimulated unprecedented responses by religious groups, ranging from fundamentalism to the syncretistic search for meaning. As religion takes on new forms, the balance between individual and community is disrupted and reconfigured. Religions often lose the capacity to recall their ultimate purpose or lead their adherents toward it. This is the situation we call “the crisis of the holy.” It is a confluence of threats, challenges, and opportunities for all religions. This volume explores the contours of pressures, changes, and transformations and reflects on how all our religions are changing. By identifying commonalities across religions as they respond to these pressures, The Crisis of the Holy recommends ways religious traditions might cope with these changes and how they might join forces in doing so. Contributors: Vincent J. Cornell, Alon Goshen-Gottstein, Sidney H. Griffith, Maria Reis Habito, B. Barry Levy, Deepak Sarma, Michael von Brück
Rigid notions of masculinity are causing crisis in the global Islamic community. These are articulated from the Qur'an, its commentary, historical precedents and societal, religious and familial obligations. Some Muslims who don't agree with narrow constructs of manliness feel forced to consider themselves secular and therefore outside the religious community. In order to evaluate whether there really is only one valid, ideal Islamic masculinity, The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities explores key figures of the Qur'an and Indian-Pakistani Islamic history, and exposes the precariousness of tight constraints on Islamic manhood. By examining Qur'anic arguments and the strict social responsibilities advocated along with narrow Islamic masculinities, Amanullah De Sondy shows that God and women (to whom Muslim men relate but are different from) often act as foils for the construction of masculinity. He argues the constrainers of masculinity have used God and women to think with and to dominate through and that rigid gender roles are the product of a misguided enterprise: the highly personal relationship between humans and God does not lend itself to the organization of society, because that relationship cannot be typified and replicated. Discussions and debates surrounding Islamic masculinities are quickly finding their place in the study of Islam and Muslims, and The Crisis of Islamic Masculinities makes a vital contribution to this emerging field.
Originally presented as the author's thesis (School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 1987) under title: The Egyptian Udabaa and the crisis of Islam.
Islam as a religion is central to the lives of over a billion people, but its outer expression as a distinctive civilization has been undergoing a monumental crisis. Buffeted by powerful adverse currents, Islamic civilization today is a shadow of its former self. The most disturbing and possibly fatal of these currents—the imperial expansion of the West into Muslim lands and the blast of modernity that accompanied it—are now compounded by a third giant wave, globalization. These forces have increasingly tested Islam and Islamic civilization for validity, adaptability, and the ability to hold on to the loyalty of Muslims, says Ali A. Allawi in his provocative new book. While the faith has proved resilient in the face of these challenges, other aspects of Islamic civilization have atrophied or died, Allawi contends, and Islamic civilization is now undergoing its last crisis. The book explores how Islamic civilization began to unravel under colonial rule, as its institutions, laws, and economies were often replaced by inadequate modern equivalents. Allawi also examines the backlash expressed through the increasing religiosity of Muslim societies and the spectacular rise of political Islam and its terrorist offshoots. Assessing the status of each of the building blocks of Islamic civilization, the author concludes that Islamic civilization cannot survive without the vital spirituality that underpinned it in the past. He identifies a key set of principles for moving forward, principles that will surprise some and anger others, yet clearly must be considered.
Across the Muslim world today, if anything is self-evident across the Muslim world today it is that the Ummah is badly in need of reform. On this point it can be stated with confidence that Muslims are agreed. Poverty and injustice characterize the face of Muslim lands from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Pollution and corruption are the order of the day in the societies where the gulf between them and the developed countries of the world has never been wider. Politics in the Muslim world are all too often the politics of deprivation, and culture the culture of despair. “Crisis in the Muslim Mind” examines the intellectual and historical roots of the malaise that has encompassed the Ummah and threatens to efface its identity. Firs published in Arabic in 1991, this important work (in an abridged English translation) is designed to familiarize educated and concerned Muslims with the nature of the crisis confronting them, and to suggest the steps necessary to overcome it.
Islam has long been a part of the West in terms of religion, culture, politics and society. Discussing this interaction from al-Andalus to the present, this Handbook explores the influence Islam has had, and continues to exert; particularly its impact on host societies, culture and politics. Highlighting specific themes and topics in history and culture, chapters cover: European paradigms Muslims in the Americas Cultural interactions Islamic cultural contributions to the Western world Western contributions to Islam Providing a sound historical background, from which a nuanced overview of Islam and Western society can be built, the Routledge Handbook of Islam in the West brings to the fore specific themes and topics that have generated both reciprocal influence, and conflict. Presenting readers with a range of perspectives from scholars based in Europe, the US, and the Middle East, this Handbook challenges perceptions on both western and Muslim sides and will be an invaluable resource for policymakers and academics with an interest in the History of Islam, Religion and the contemporary relationship between Islam and the West.