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Contemporary Moroccan Thought offers a new and broad coverage of the intellectual dynamics and scholarly output of what is presented here as the Rabat School since the 1950s. Geographically situated at the western edge of the classical Arab-Islamic world, Moroccan scholarship has made a belated yet vigorous comeback on the modern Arab intellectual scene, attracting wider reception beyond the Arabic-speaking world, through influential contributions in philosophical, theological, social and cultural studies.
This volume sets a new standard in the study of Moroccan, North African, and Middle Eastern societies, and will undoubtedly remain an important scholarly reference for generations to come.

Deina Abdelkader, Nayla Abu Nader, Kholoud Al-Ajarma, Salah Basalamah, Mohamed Wajdi Ben Hammed, Sara Borrillo, Ibrahim Bouhaouliane, Tina Dransfeldt Christensen, Driss El Ghazouani, Brahim El Guabli, Abdennabi El Harri, Amin El-Yousfi, Francesca Forte, Fatma Gargouri, Wael Hallaq, Mohammed Hashas, Alma Rachel Heckman, Aziz Hlaoua, Abdellatif Kidai, Markus Kneer, Mohamed Lamallam, Khalid Lyamlahi, Juan A. Macías-Amoretti, Djelloul Magoura, Mohammed K. B. Rhazzali, Raja Rhouni, Nils Riecken, Fatima Sadiqi, Hamza Salih, Ari Schriber, Simone Sibilio, and Abdessalam Tawil.
Buddhist-Muslim relations are usually seen as inherently confrontational. This book challenges the view of Buddhism and Islam as fundamentally irreconcilable by exploring the diverse ways representatives of the two traditions have engaged each other in Southeast Asia—the global frontstage of contemporary Buddhist-Muslim relations—and Japan—a Buddhist-majority country whose ‘Islam policy’ played a significant role in its surge to global power status. It investigates the processes through which mutual perceptions and discourses have developed in response to shifting socio-political circumstances and via the intellectual interventions of leading personalities.
In Hajj Travelogues: Texts and Contexts from the 12th Century until 1950 Richard van Leeuwen maps the corpus of hajj accounts from the Muslim world and Europe. The work outlines the main issues in a field of study which has largely been neglected. A large number of hajj travelogues are described as a textual type integrating religious discourse into the form of the journey. Special attention is given to their intertextual embedding in the broader discursive tradition of the hajj. Since the corpus is seen as dynamic and responsive to historical developments, the texts are situated in their historical context and the subsequent phases of globalisation. It is shown how in travelogues forms of religious subjectivity are constructed and expressed.
Evolving Attitudes towards "Others" in Modern Shiʿi Thought and Practice
In Know Thy Enemy, Meir Litvak analyzes the re-articulations of the “Others” in modern Shiʿism, as a novel way to examine the formulation of modern Shiʿi identity and place in the world. Among these others, which have transformed into "enemies" in the modern period are the West, apostates, Wahhabism, Jews, Baha'is and feminism.

Looking at the rhetorical themes that Shiʿi writers use, the book demonstrates the contrast between the collective positive “We” and the negative threatening "Other" as a major principle in the evolution of Shiʻism as the minority branch of Islam. It offers a complex view of Shiʿi identity combining a sense of victimhood and insecurity together with conviction of intellectual and moral superiority and long-term triumph.
With this work, Justyna Nedza presents the first comprehensive analysis of the theologically charged legal practice of “declaring someone an unbeliever” (takfir) in militant Salafist thought. Her investigation zooms in on the role of takfir in the formal legitimization of militant jihad against government institutions. Investigating both the Egyptian and Saudi Arabian case, Nedza demonstrates the importance of the regional context in shaping consistent legal arguments for the legitimacy of takfir of collectives. The careful analysis of the arguments of four selected militant Salafist authors brings out that this contextuality plays also a decisive role for the respective textual references, as well as shaping the conclusions drawn by the Egyptian and Saudi Arabian authors, respectively.

In dieser Arbeit präsentiert Justyna Nedza die erste umfassende Analyse der theologisch aufgeladenen Rechtspraxis des „Apostasievorwurfs“ (takfīr) im Milieu des militanten „Salafismus“. Dabei liegt ein besonderer Fokus auf der rechtlichen Begründung von gewaltsamen Widerstand (ǧihād) gegen staatliche Organe in muslimischen Mehrheitsgesellschaften, sowie die hiermit verbundene Ausweitung dieses Rechtsmittels vom Individuum auf Kollektive. Anhand der komparatistischen Untersuchung der Schriften von vier ausgewählten Autoren aus Ägypten und Saudi-Arabien zeigt Nedza, dass deren divergenter nationaler Kontext eine entscheidende Rolle sowohl für ihre jeweiligen textlichen Referenzrahmen als auch ihre entsprechenden Schlussfolgerungen spielt. Damit wird die bisher weithin akzeptierte These vom “Salafismus” als global einheitlichem Phänomen auf den Prüfstand gehoben.
Mystical Islam and Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Modern World
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.
What happens when the idea of religious progress propels the shaping of modernity? In The Ahmadiyya Quest for Religious Progress. Missionizing Europe 1900 – 1965 Gerdien Jonker offers an account of the mission the Ahmadiyya reform movement undertook in interwar Europe. Nowadays persecuted in the Muslim world, Ahmadis appear here as the vanguard of a modern, rational Islam that met with a considerable interest.

Ahmadiyya mission on the European continent attracted European ‘moderns’, among them Jews and Christians, theosophists and agnostics, artists and academics, liberals and Nazis. Each in their own manner, all these people strove towards modernity, and were convinced that Islam helped realizing it. Based on a wide array of sources, this book unravels the multiple layers of entanglement that arose once the missionaries and their quarry met.
A Transcultural Historical Perspective
Volume Editors: , , and
Muslims in Interwar Europe provides a comprehensive overview of the history of Muslims in interwar Europe. Based on personal and official archives, memoirs, press writings and correspondences, the contributors analyse the multiple aspects of the global Muslim religious, political and intellectual affiliations in interwar Europe. They argue that Muslims in interwar Europe were neither simply visitors nor colonial victims, but that they constituted a group of engaged actors in the European and international space.

Contributors are Ali Al Tuma, Egdūnas Račius, Gerdien Jonker, Klaas Stutje, Naomi Davidson, Pieter Sjoerd van Koningsveld, Umar Ryad, Zaur Gasimov and Wiebke Bachmann.

This title is available online in its entirety in Open Access.
In this book Ousman Kobo analyzes the origins of Wahhabi-inclined reform movements in two West African countries. Commonly associated with recent Middle Eastern influences, reform movements in Ghana and Burkina Faso actually began during the twilight of European colonial rule in the 1950s and developed from local doctrinal contests over Islamic orthodoxy. These early movements in turn gradually evolved in ways sympathetic to Wahhabi ideas. Kobo also illustrates the modernism of this style of Islamic reform. The decisive factor for most of the movements was the alliance of secularly educated Muslim elites with Islamic scholars to promote a self-consciously modern religiosity rooted in the Prophet Muhammad’s traditions. This book therefore provides a fresh understanding of the indigenous origins of “Wahhabism.”