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This book retraces the human and intellectual development that has led the author to one very firm conviction: that the tensions that afflict the Western world’s relationship with the Muslim world are at their root political, far more than they are ideological. It aims to limit itself to a precise scholarly arena: recounting, as meticulously as possible, the most striking interactions between a personal life history and professional and research trajectories. This path has consistently centered on how the rise of political Islam has been expressed: first in the Arab world, then in its interactions with French and Western societies, and finally in its interactions with other European and Western societies. It brings up-to-date theses formulated in the 2000s, in particular in the author’s previous book Islamism in the Shadow of al-Qaeda (2005, 2nd ed. 2010, English ed. 2010), by measuring them up against the lessons of the powerful revolutionary dynamics set off by the “Arab Spring” of 2011, followed by the counter-revolutionary ones.

A veiled threat
Thomas J. Butko

I N THE MIDDLE East, security is strongly influenced by politicized forms of fundamental belief systems. This chapter examines the dual role of political Islam, with specific focus on Palestine and the case of Hamas , the Islamic Resistance Movement, in the West Bank and Gaza. In this context, political Islam represents a general rejection of the Arab

in Redefining security in the Middle East
The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood after the 2013 coup

Surviving repression tells the story of the Muslim Brotherhood after the 2013 coup. The movement quickly rose to power following the 2011 Arab uprisings, but its premature removal marked the beginning of the harshest repression of its troubled history. Forced into exile, the Brotherhood and its members are faced with the monumental task of having to rebuild a fragmented organisation. The book looks at this new era in the movement’s history through the perspective of individual members, relying on conversations with current and former members from across the generational and organisational spectrums. It puts emphasis on their experiences, perspectives and emotions to better understand how their responses to repression are affecting the movement as a whole. It is the first book to comprehensively address the Brotherhood’s trajectories after the 2013 coup, and to examine the external and internal challenges it faces while trying to rebuild in exile. Surviving repression offers an invaluable insight into the main strategical, ideological and organisational debates dividing the Brotherhood and reveals that, in order to survive, the movement needs to answer two fundamental challenges. These are: what kind of organisation the Brotherhood wants to be moving forward; and whether or not it is willing to renegotiate the relationship between the movement and its members in order to maximise survival and resilience. Overall, it shows that the main forces driving the Brotherhood’s evolution after 2013 are fundamental questions about organisational identity, its members’ increased agency, and growing calls to reform the movement’s core structures and principles.

Open Access (free)
Sovereignty, violence and revolution in the Middle East

In events that have since become known as the Arab Uprisings or Arab Revolutions, people across the Middle East took to the streets to express their anger and frustration at political climates, demanding political and economic reform. In a number of cases, protest movements were repressed, often violently, with devastating repercussions for human security and peace across the region.

While a number of scholars have sought to understand how the protests occurred, this book looks at sovereignty and the relationship between rulers and ruled to identify and understand both the roots of this anger but also the mechanisms through which regimes were able to withstand seemingly existential pressures and maintain power.

The case of Austria
Farid Hafez

population in Austria have protested against the Islam Act of 2015 (Hafez 2017a ), as well as much other legislation that has been implemented thereafter, the reactions of state institutions and their allies in academia have tried to delegitimise and defame voices of dissent (Hafez 2019 ). This has culminated in the establishment of a state-funded institution, the Documentation Centre for Political Islam (Dokumentationsstelle Politischer Islam), which attempts to map out what the Austrian government has called ‘political Islam’, a classification which excludes Muslim

in The rise of global Islamophobia in the War on Terror
François Burgat

radically contradictory with the requirements of scientific method. (This standpoint baffles me rather less than that of the CEDEJ.) “One cannot be a scholar and fast.” So a famous Parisian anthropologist asserted, far removed from any historical, sociological, or epistemological reason, to a colleague who had invoked a scheduling constraint tied to his Ramadan fast. Thirty years of attending colloquia and other “international” seminars on political Islam, “Religion and Politics,” and so forth, enable me to certify that the recipe applied by universities and the research

in Understanding Political Islam
Abstract only
Meir Hatina

society and government. 4 Liberal writers also provided an alternative agenda for relations between individual and state, religion and politics, Islam and the West, and pursued the goals of Arab progress by employing five main features: 1) intellectual skepticism, which embodied the Kantian concept of the development of personal wisdom, rather than reliance on a given authority, for the creation of a qualitative basis for rational public debate; 2) human compassion or empathy, regardless of religion, race, and gender; 3) historical relativism

in Arab liberal thought in the modern age
François Burgat

“process of cultural reappropriation of modernity.” 7 Curiously, since he set out this perspective, Roy has used it only occasionally. On very many points, however, our perceptions long remained very close. My approach later diverged from his, first with respect to this thesis of “the failure of political Islam”; then on how to interpret the “Arab Spring”; and finally, and more sharply, on our interpretations of the jihadi phenomenon. Roy: Did Someone Say “Failure of Political Islam”? Our first disagreements derived

in Understanding Political Islam
Abstract only
Lucia Ardovini

until domestic conditions radically shift, presents two very different paths ahead. Regardless of the one it chooses, the Brotherhood's future trajectory is bound to have drastic implications not only for the organisation, but also for understandings and practices of political Islam across the region. The novelty of these circumstances and the subsequent invalidation of the Brotherhood's historical experiences call for a renewed analysis of how the movement and its members react to repression and illegality. This is because the literature on the

in Surviving repression
Abstract only
Stacey Gutkowski

the 1980s, with the emergence of Hezbollah and Hamas in the 1980s as popular armed resistance movements and the Islamization of anti-Occupation protest narratives. The next part of the chapter uses data from millennials to analyse contemporary discourse about political Islamism and jihad. It points to five factors which have shaped and problematized hiloni stereotypes about political Islamism and jihad during these years. These are: Israel’s experiences with what it understands as an axis of resistance – Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran; America’s War on Terror

in Religion, war and Israel’s secular millennials