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Essay on Islamization

Changes in Religious Practice in Muslim Societies

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Mohamed Cherkaoui

Essay on Islamization is a study of the Islamization of all Muslim societies, their conversion to orthodox Islam which, with its chapels, soldier monks and holy war, leads to fundamentalism as well as to a moral puritanism. Cherkaoui gauges the importance of this global phenomenon by analyzing the empirical data of some sixty Muslim and non-Muslim societies. He also conducts two ethnographic surveys to identify the metamorphoses of Muslim religious practices and their causes.

Among the dozen theories put forward to explain these planetary phenomena, he cites those of secularization, modernization, the religious market, the influence of the media and the policy of donors of unlimited financial resources, social mobility, geopolitical causes, the emergence of fundamentalism and the role of "proletarian" intellectuals who promote Messianism, and social pressure.

The Inimitable Qurʾān

Some Problems in English Translations of the Qurʾān with Reference to Rhetorical Features

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Khalid Yahya Blankinship

In The Inimitable Qurʾān: Some Problems in English Translations of the Qurʾān with Reference to Rhetorical Features, Khalid Yahya Blankinship examines certain Arabic rhetorical features of the Qurʾān as represented in seven English translations. The author addresses the intersection of two important topics in Qurʾānic studies: the critique of the available English translations and the role of rhetoric in the interpretation of the Qurʾān. He identifies a number of figures characteristic of Qurʾanic style which represent some of the chief stumbling blocks for readers who are used to English in attempting to understand, interpret, and appreciate the text. The book should be useful to all those interested in rhetorical and translation studies and theory as well as Islamic studies.

Migration and Islamic Ethics

Issues of Residence, Naturalization and Citizenship

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Edited by Ray Jureidini and Said Fares Hassan

Migration and Islamic Ethics, Issues of Residence, Naturalization and Citizenship addresses how Islamic ethical and legal traditions can contribute to current global debates on migration and displacement; how Islamic ethics of muʾakha, ḍiyāfa, ijāra, amān, jiwār, sutra, kafāla, among others, may provide common ethical grounds for a new paradigm of social and political virtues applicable to all humanity, not only Muslims. The present volume more broadly defines the Islamic tradition to cover not only theology but also to encompass ethics, customs and social norms, as well as modern political, humanitarian and rights discourses. The first section addresses theorizations and conceptualizations using contemporary Islamic examples, mainly in the treatment of asylum-seekers and refugees; the second, contains empirical analyses of contemporary case studies; the third provides historical accounts of Muslim migratory experiences.

Contributors are: Abbas Barzegar, Abdul Jaleel, Dina Taha, Khalid Abou El Fadl, Mettursun Beydulla, Radhika Kanchana, Ray Jureidini, Rebecca Gould, Said Fares Hassan, Sari Hanafi, Tahir Zaman.

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Wilfried Zoungrana

No Country for Migrants? Critical Perspectives on Asylum, Immigration, and Integration in Germany aims to critically contribute to ongoing debates about immigration, integration, and xenophobia in Germany. Set against the backdrop of Germany’s controversial political decision to open its borders to refugees in 2015, the book realigns this watershed with the broader historical narratives of migration to explain its exceptionality both as an event and transformative force on the migration/integration discourse. The book further uses critical theories to make sense of the shifting socio-political coordinates of Germany. It addresses the history of Germany’s migration policies, its soft and hard power in migration control, language and societal integration, immigration and the revival of right-wing extremism, as well as religion and immigration.

Visions of Sharīʿa

Contemporary Discussions in Shī ͑ī Legal Theory

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Edited by Ali-reza Bhojani, Laurens de Rooij and Michael Bohlander

In Visions of Sharīʿa Bhojani, De Rooij and Bohlander present the first broad examination of ways in which legal theory ( uṣūl al-fiqh) within Twelver Shīʿī thought continues to be a forum for vibrant debates regarding the assumptions, epistemology and hermeneutics of Sharīʿa in contemporary Shīʿī thought. Bringing together authoritative voices and emerging scholars, from both ‘traditional’ seminaries and ‘Western’ academies, the distinct critical insider and emic accounts provided develop a novel avenue in Islamic legal studies. Contextualised through reference to the history of Shīʿī legal theory as well as contemporary juristic practice and socio-political considerations, the volume demonstrates how one of the most intellectually vibrant and developed discourses of Islamic thought continues to be a key forum for exploring visions of Sharīʿa.

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Nesrine Badawi

In Islamic Jurisprudence on the Regulation of Armed Conflict: Text and Context, Nesrine Badawi argues against the existence of a ‘true’ interpretation of the rules of regulation armed conflict in Islam. In a survey of formative and modern seminal legal works on the subject, the author offers a detailed examination of the internal deductive structures of those key juristic works on the subject and elaborates on different methodological inconsistencies in them to shed light on the role played by the socio-political context in the development of Islamic jurisprudence.

Muslims at the Margins of Europe

Finland, Greece, Ireland and Portugal

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Edited by Tuomas Martikainen, José Mapril and Adil Hussain Khan

This volume focuses on Muslims in Finland, Greece, Ireland and Portugal, representing the four corners of the European Union today. It highlights how Muslim experiences can be understood in relation to a country’s particular historical routes, political economies, colonial and post-colonial legacies, as well as other factors, such as church-state relations, the role of secularism(s), and urbanisation. This volume also reveals the incongruous nature of the fact that national particularities shaping European Muslim experiences cannot be understood independently of European and indeed global dynamics. This makes it even more important to consider every national context when analysing patterns in European Islam, especially those that have yet to be fully elaborated. The chapters in this volume demonstrate the contradictory dynamics of European Muslim contexts that are simultaneously distinct yet similar to the now familiar ones of Western Europe’s most populous countries.

Sufism East and West

Mystical Islam and Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Modern World

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Edited by Jamal Malik and Saeed Zarrabi-Zadeh

In Sufism East and West, the contributors investigate the redirection and dynamics of Sufism in the modern era, specifically from the perspective of global cross-cultural exchange. Edited by Jamal Malik and Saeed Zarrabi-Zadeh, the book explores the role of mystical Islam in the complex interchange and fluidity in the resonance spaces of “East” and “West.”
The volume challenges the enduring Orientalist binary coding of East-versus-West and argues instead for a more mutual process of cultural plaiting and shared tradition. By highlighting amendments, adaptations and expansions of Sufi semantics during the last centuries, it also questions the persistent perception of Sufism in its post-classical epoch as a corrupt imitation of the legacy of the great Sufis of the past.

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Carl W. Ernst

Abstract

From the time of Sir William Jones (1746–1794), early British Orientalists were united in their praise of the Dabistan-i Mazahib (“School of Teachings”), a 17th-century Persian treatise on all the religious teachings existing in India at the time. The unusual perspective of the author as a follower of the esoteric Zoroastrian movement of Azar Kayvan subsequently led many scholars to discredit it as a reliable historical witness, despite its many quasi-ethnographic observations of contemporary religious behavior and thought. These observations, both admiring and critical, apply particularly to the book’s treatment of Sufism in its final chapter. Yet the work’s immense popularity, in the deeply flawed 1847 translation of David Shea (1777–1836) and Anthony Troyer (1769–1865), reinforced many common Orientalist stereotypes of Sufism, including its ostensible universality and its supposed lack of connection with Islam. This chapter undertakes to assess the character and impact of Shea and Troyer’s presentation of Sufism in their translation of the Dabistan, as measured against both the original Persian text and the more robust accounts of Sufism available from other sources.

Series:

Ali S. Asani

Abstract

Historically, South Asia’s many literary traditions have provided both the structure and the idiom for Muslims across a broad spectrum of ideological persuasions to express and transmit their ideas. As is well known, Sufis affiliated with different tariqas have commonly employed genres of vernacular folk poetry as a means of elucidating and popularizing mystical ideas. Over the last century, thanks to a variety of intricately related set of factors such as the revolution in media technology, globalization and the spread of popular western culture and the rise of religiously based nationalisms, the form, content and context of South Asian Muslim devotional expressions have been radically transformed. This chapter explores the emergence of Sufi Rock, a new genre of Muslim devotional expression that has become increasingly popular in South Asia, particularly Pakistan. A genre which fuses western rock music with traditional Sufi poetry and imagery, Sufi Rock is commonly associated with one of its earliest exponents, Salman Ahmad, a guitarist and vocalist in one of South Asia’s biggest rock band, Junoon. The chapter explores Salman’s role in the emergence of Sufi Rock, specifically with reference to his professional development as a musician and spiritual development as a Muslim who deeply identifies with Sufism.