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In: Muslim Subjectivity in Soviet Russia
Open Access
In: Muslim Subjectivity in Soviet Russia
Open Access
In: Muslim Subjectivity in Soviet Russia
Author:

Abstract

The descendants of the Prophet Muhammad inherited his charisma and sacred prestige. These properties were shared by his descendants who became the legendary Muslim saints and scholars, also in Central Asia and Siberia, and whose names are connected with the early history of the Islamization of the Siberian Tatars. New manuscripts of a genealogical treatise, which is the main topic of this article, the Shajara risālasī, were recently discovered. An edition (with variant readings) of the Tatar text and an English translation are here offered for the first time. Yasaviyyan influence in Siberia was known to have existed as early as the 17th century. However, critical reading of the genealogical treatise makes it possible to trace back the islamization of the Siberian Tatars by one century. Bukhara and Urgench could be identified as the centres from where this islamization drive of Siberia was launched. The sacred genealogies circulated for about four centuries in the common intellectual space of Central Asia, Eastern Turkestan, Siberia and the Volga-Ural region, untill the Bolshevik reign brought all this to an untimely end.

In: Journal of Islamic Manuscripts

Hagiographic sources from nineteenth-century Inner Russia and Khvārazm indicate the existence of a cluster of Muslims opposed to the state-supported Islamic institutions of the Russian Empire. Many Muslim scholars of the period did not accord the Volga-Ural region the status of an ‘abode of Islam,’ as they considered it to be a ‘land of ignorance.’ This paper examines the significance attached by Muslims of Inner Russia to the pious rhetoric of resettlement from a ‘land of ignorance’ to the ‘abode of Islam’. I argue that the opposition to the already well-established imperial structures in the Volga-Urals resulted in the formation of a powerful migrant community near Urgench, Khvārazm, that used the Naqshbandiya-Mojaddediya Sufi networks as a stable bridge to home.

In: Journal of Persianate Studies
The Memoirs of ’Abd al-Majid al-Qadiri
Volume Editors: and
The world as seen by a Qur’an specialist in late imperial and early Soviet Russia. Our book tells a dramatic story of ’Abd al-Majid al-Qadiri, a Muslim individual born in the Kazakh lands and brought up in the Sufi environment of the South Urals, who memorized the entire Qur’an at the Mosque of the Prophet. In Russia he travelled widely, performing the Qur'an recitations. The Stalinist terror was merciless to him: in total, he spent fifteen years of his life in labour camps in Solovki, in the North, and Tashkent, in the south. At the end of his life, al-Qadiri wrote the fascinating memoirs that we analysed and translated in this book for the first time. Al-Qadiri’s life account allows us to look at the history of Islam in Russia from a new angle. His lively language provides access to everyday concerns of Russia’s Muslims, their personal interactions, their emotions, and the material world that surrounded them. Al-Qadiri’s book is a book of memory, full of personal drama and hope.

Abstract

This article examines the place occupied by garden culture in the mental landscape of Russia’s Muslims from the early nineteenth century to the late Socialist era. First taken from the Qur’an as a symbol of eternal salvation, the idea that gardens might embody both aesthetic and metaphysical values was further articulated by traveling missionaries with Sufi affiliations. This idea was afterwards absorbed by the generation of students graduated from Central Asian madrasas who, in the first half of the nineteenth century, brought the fashion for having gardens back to their home villages in European Russia. Gardens built or imagined by Muslims in European Russia had a history of their own, developing from the classical vision of heavenly gardens in Qur’anic exegesis into what became a central spatial category in Sufi tradition. In post-war Soviet Russia a place of piety was rethought as dacha—the entire process reflecting the evolution of Muslim subjectivity over the last few centuries.

Open Access
In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient