This book examines the modern Arab rediscovery of the Muʿtazila through a critical assessment of the concept of "Neo-Muʿtazilism" and by concentrating on the various intentions and contexts of the use of Muʿtazilite ideas.
The main part of the book analyzes five ways of understanding Mu'tazilite ideas — liberal, historic-materialist, political-Islamic, literary-exegetical and through comparison with the philosophie des valeurs — as well as one way of dealing with the school historically: the treatment of the
The book discusses a wide range of authors of whom many, such as Aḥmad Amīn, Ḥusain Murūwa, Ḥasan Ḥanafī, Muḥammad ʿAmāra, Naṣr Abū Zaid und Muḥammad ʿĀbid al-Ğābirī, have had an important impact on modern Arab-Islamic thought. By also presenting authors such as Zuhdī Ğārallāh, Chikh Bouamrane, Rašīd al-Ḫayyūn, Amīn Nāyif Ḏiyāb, Samīḥ Duġaim, ʿĀdil al-ʿAwwā und Fahmī Ğadʿān, additional light is shed on a number of lesser known figures.
Thomas Hildebrandt studied Arabic and Islamic Studies in Hamburg and Leipzig. His M.A. thesis deals with Ḥasan Ḥanafī (Berlin 1998). He wrote his Ph.D. thesis in Bamberg, where he coordinates the Graduate Programme "Anthropological Foundations and Developments in Christianity and Islam"
All those interested in the intellectual history of the modern Arab-Islamic world, especially with regard to theological, philosophical and political questions, as well as scholars interested in the Mu'tazila.