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Modernization without Colonization
François Burgat

’s regional mission—even if this remained for some time embryonic given lack of personnel. 4 In scholarly terms, the task was in some sense to restore Yemen to its rightful centrality, given its importance within the mythic and symbolic universe of Muslim (but also pre-Islamic) history. French researchers still too often limited their fieldwork in Arab countries to the shores of the Mediterranean and the banks of the Nile, or to Bilad al-Sham , the Levant. It was thus incumbent upon me to do everything possible to ensure that the Southern Gulf

in Understanding Political Islam
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Jonathan Benthall

Few topics are as contested today as contemporary Islam. This book concentrates on some of its more attractive and positive features, without lapsing into a roseate view. All the chapters have been published previously. The first two thirds ( Part I ) are devoted to Islamic charities and humanitarianism, are mainly grounded in original research, and are fairly up to date

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
The structure of Islamic toleration
Jonathan Benthall

This chapter attempts to bring to bear some insights from cultural anthropology on the question of religious toleration, a cornerstone of modern humanism. It concludes, from examining in particular the respective historical attitudes of Christianity and Islam towards ‘polytheistic’ belief systems, that they both can claim their own tradition of

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
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Jonathan Benthall

This chapter was originally the entry on Yusuf al-Qaradawi in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Politics (Oxford, 2014). A collection of articles edited by Gräf and Skovgaard-Petersen ( 2009 ) may be recommended for further reading. Since the encyclopedia went to press, tensions between Qaradawi and the al-Sisi government in Egypt were heightened after

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
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Jonathan Benthall

This review of Tariq Ramadan’s The Arab Awakening: Islam and the new Middle East (Allen Lane, 2012) was published in the Times Literary Supplement ( TLS ), 12 October 2012, under the heading ‘Splits at the seams?’. Chapter 7 of this book describes the successful efforts of the American Civil Liberties

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
Jonathan Benthall

This chapter was originally prepared for a special issue of Asian Ethnology . I took the risk of coining a neologism, ‘puripetal force’. A further example to illustrate the theme of hyper-purism within Islam would be the distinction cited in the Introduction (pp. 13–14) between ‘purist’ and ‘activist’ Salafis in Kuwait, set out in Pall 2014

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
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British media as a discursive system
Laurens de Rooij

Unlike some topics presented in the media, which have been subjected to sustained academic analysis, research on the British media's representation of Islam is a recent phenomenon with important results. 1 Works in the broader context of the media treatment of religion, particularly “fundamentalism” have been increasing. Yet there has been little empirical research into the British media's treatment of religion and the influence it has on its potential audience(s), Al-Azami's analysis of the

in Islam in British media discourses
Jonathan Benthall

implemented through both operational and research activities, touching upon a variety of topics and situations worldwide. Within the activities of the project, the initiative ‘Towards cooperation in removing unjustified obstacles for Islamic charities’ (also known as the Montreux Initiative) was launched in 2005. The objectives of the initiative are to build confidence between

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
Jonathan Benthall

In February 2004, Tariq Ramadan, the well-known Swiss-born academic and commentator on Islamic matters, applied for a non-immigrant US visa on accepting a professorship in peace studies at the University of Notre Dame. He was granted a visa, but in July the State Department revoked it, citing the ‘ideological exclusion provision’ of the USA

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
Jonathan Benthall

, writing that after the Iranian Revolution of 1989, the USA gave ‘tacit support to the Saudis’ project of countering Shia radicalism by Wahhabising the entire Muslim world’, thus undermining the long tradition of Islamic pluralism and eventually facilitating the rise of ISIS, which has come back to haunt the Kingdom (Armstrong 2014b ). As regards the ideology of ISIS or the ‘Islamic

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times