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Islamic World: Recommended Introductory Books
Asian Islam in the 21st Century by
Although more than half of the world's Muslims live in Asia, most books on contemporary Islam focus on the Middle East, giving short shift to the dynamic and diverse presence of Asian Islam in regional and global politics. The Muslims of Asia constitute the largest Muslim communities in the world - Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India and Central Asia. In recent years, terrorist bombings in Bali, separatist conflicts in Thailand and the Philippines, and opposition politics in Central Asia, all point to the strategic importance of Asian Islam. In Asian Islam in the 21st Century, terrorism and its effects are placed within the broader context of Muslim politics and how Islamic ideals and movements, mainstream and extremist, have shaped Asian Muslim societies. Democratization experiments -- successful and unsuccessful -- are examined. The rise of radical militant movements is analyzed and placed in historical perspective. The result is an insightful portrait of the rich diversity of Muslim politics and discourse that continue to affect Asian Muslim majority and minority countries. Specialists and students of Islamic studies, religion and international affairs, and comparative politics as well as general readers will benefit from this sorely needed comprehensive analysis of a part of the world that has become increasingly important in the 21st century.
Islam in Hong Kong: Muslims and Everyday Life in China's World City by
More than a quarter of a million Muslims live and work in Hong Kong. Among them are descendants of families who have been in the city for generations, recent immigrants from around the world, and growing numbers of migrant workers. Islam in Hong Kong explores the lives of Muslims as ethnic and religious minorities in this unique post-colonial Chinese city. Drawing on interviews with Muslims of different origins, O'Connor builds a detailed picture of daily life through topical chapters on language, space, religious education, daily prayers, maintaining a halal diet in a Chinese environment, racism, and other subjects. Although the picture that emerges is complex and ambiguous, one striking conclusion is that Muslims in Hong Kong generally find acceptance as a community and do not consider themselves to be victimised because of their religion.
Islam in South Asia by
Drawing on Muslim cultures in South Asia, this volume provides new insights into social and intellectual history of the complex forms of cultural articulation from seventh to the twentieth century, elaborating on various trends and tendencies in a pluralist setting.
Sultans, Shamans, and Saints by
"By the fourteenth century the Islamic faith had spread via maritime trade routes to Southeast Asia where, over the next seven hundred years, it would have a continuing influence on political life, social customs, and the development of the arts. Sultans, Shamans, and Saints looks at Islam in Southeast Asia during four major eras: its arrival (to 1300), the first flowering of Islamic identity (1300–1800), the era of imperialism (1800–1945), and the era of independent nation-states (1945–2000). Ranging across the humanities and social sciences, this balanced and accessible work emphasizes the historical development of Southeast Asia’s accommodation of Islam and the creation of its distinctive regional character. Each chapter opens with a general background summary that places events in the greater Asian/Southeast Asian context, followed by an overview of prominent ethnic groups, political events, customs and cultures, religious factors, and art forms. Sultans, Shamans, and Saints will be of great value to students and researchers specializing in the study of Islam and the comparative study of Muslim societies and culture. It will also be useful to those with a world-systems approach to the study of history and globalization." - University of Hawai'i Press
Western Muslims and the Future of Islam by
In a Western world suddenly acutely interested in Islam, one question has been repeatedly heard above the din: where are the Muslim reformers? As the number of Muslims living in the West grows, the question of what it means to be a Western Muslim becomes increasingly important to the futures of both Islam and the West. While the media are focused on radical Islam, this book claims that a silent revolution is sweeping Islamic communities in the West, as Muslims actively seek ways to live in harmony with their faith within a Western context. French, English, German, and American Muslims—women as well as men—are reshaping their religion into one that is faithful to the principles of Islam, dressed in European and American cultures, and definitively rooted in Western societies. The book's goal is to create an independent Western Islam, anchored not in the traditions of Islamic countries but in the cultural reality of the West. It begins by offering a fresh reading of Islamic sources, interpreting them for a Western context and demonstrating how a new understanding of universal Islamic principles can open the door to integration into Western societies. The author contends that Muslims can—indeed must—be faithful to their principles while participating fully in the civic life of Western secular societies. This book offers a vision of a new Muslim Identity that rejects the idea that Islam must be defined in opposition to the West.
Islam in Anatolia after the Turkish Invasion by
"Islam in Anatolia after the Turkish Invasion is an unfinished classic written by Mehmed Fuad Kopriilii in 1922, recently translated and edited by Gary Leiser. In this work, originally published as an article in Dariilfiinun Edebiyat Fakilltesi Mecmuasi, Kopriilu utilized substantial primary source data to challenge Orientalist scholarship on the impact of neighboring cultures on Turkish-Islamic history. Franz Babinger, a German scholar, initiated the debate by contending that Islam in Turkey had Iranian-Shiite roots between the 10th and 15th centuries. Although Kopriilu acknowledged Babinger's groundbreaking manuscript, he also introduced existing primary sources to challenge that thesis. As a result, an academic debate crystallized around the cultural-historical roots of Islam in Turkey." - Ömer K. Alptekin
Islam in Southeast Asia by
"Islam is a major religion in Southeast Asia, with Indonesian Muslims comprising the largest Muslim population in the world. Events and developments since 11 September 2001 have added greater attention to Islam and its adherents in this part of the world.This general survey of Islam in Southeast Asia is intended to inform, explain and update readers about the more significant aspects of Islam in Southeast Asia, then and now. These include the following: the geographical origins and sources by which the faith spread in this region; the social, economic and political profiles of the Muslim communities; relations between Muslims and non-Muslims and between Muslims and the State; the strands and trends that shapes the role of Islam and the Muslims in the national body politic; and the challenges confronting Muslims in confronting the vicissitudes of their lives in this era of rapid change, characterized by modernization, capitalism, secularization and globalization.The discussion will begin with an overview of the broad picture of Islam and the Muslims in the region as a whole, covering both Muslim-majority and Muslim-minority countries. This will be followed by case-study analysis of Islam and the Muslims in individual countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.Given the difficulty of writing on such a complex and contentious topic, this book attempts to present the subject matter in a manner that is sufficiently objective to scholars and yet simple and accessible enough to be readily understood by ordinary readers." - CUP
Islamic World: Recommended Introductory Articles