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One of the most dynamic processes of re-ethnicizing the mind has been taking place in the Arab world during the last three decades under the banner of Islamicization. Its advocates have been claiming Islam to be “the solution” to the mounting political, economic, social, cultural and intellectual problems of the area. Their claims have been rebutted by critical thinkers who have warned against the dangers of essentialism in conceiving identity, of particularism in producing knowledge and of theocracy in ruling their countries. They have emphasized the importance of re-centering the historical, the human and the other in approaching these matters. Theirs is a difficult but important struggle, led under most forbidding circumstances. This contribution presents briefly some of these critical theses, putting them in their historical and postcolonial contexts.

In: Re-ethnicizing the Minds?
The Middle East, Africa and Asia
Modern Intellectual Trends is a peer reviewed book series that includes monographs, edited volumes, critical editions (for text from the pre-print age) in the original languages and scripts, and annotated translations on intellectual history from the 18th century to the present. The coverage includes philosophy, theology, hermeneutics, mysticism, views and debates on science and the so-called occult sciences, political thought, gender, legal theory, nahḍa studies, postcolonial studies, and adjacent areas, i.e. in intellectual history in the broadest sense. The series welcomes transregional and transcultural contributions.
The series will be open for publications on modern thought from the global south, with a special focus on the Middle East (Arab world, Turkey, Iran), but also the Balkans, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, Africa, as well as the Muslim diaspora. Submissions in Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and other non-Western languages, will also be considered, in addition to English, French, and German.