Sunday, February 27, 2011

Modernism and Fundamentalism in Islam. Part 8

This continues what I started in Modernism and Fundamentalism in Islam. Part 1. The previous installment was Part 7.

I am reading Modernist and Fundamentalist Debates in Islam. A Reader, edited by Mansoor Moaddel and Kamran Talattof, and published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2002. All citations refer to that book, unless otherwise stated.

This is the last installment of this series. It will be a short one, because I will have nothing to say. You really should quit reading now. I'm only doing this because of consistency. Because I listed all the previous articles, I will list the rest of them as well.

"Part Two: Islamic Fundamentalism" contains two sections. The first of them is "III. Islam and Western Civilization". It contains the following five articles, the titles (given by the editors) of which give some idea of the content:

  1. "Critical Attitude Toward the West and the Idea of Western Decadence" by Ali Shariati (1933-77).
  2. "Self-Destructiveness of Western Civilization" by Sayyid Abul A'la Maududi (1903-79).
  3. "Granting Capitulatory Rights to the U.S." by Imam Ruhullah Khomeini (1902-89).
  4. "Islam and Its Adversaries" by Abd al-Latif Sultani (d. 1984), and
  5. "Westoxication" by Jalal Al-i Ahmad (1923-69).

The book's final section is "IV. Women and the Hijab". Unfortunately, it is not as interesting as one might think. It contains only two articles:

  1. "A Moralizing Fundamentalism" by Abd al-Latif Sultani (d. 1984), and
  2. "On the Islamic Hijab" by Murtaza Mutahhari (1920-79).

All the articles in these last two sections of the book are pretty boring. They are made up of bad rhetoric and seem to have very little of relevance now. And what relevance they might have, is repulsive, dogmatic, and conservative drivel, lacking in argumentation. It was my intention to seek interpretations of Islam compatible with the 21st Century global, secular, humanistic civilization. These texts are not helpful, even as something to argue against. There is so little here to argue about. The dogmatics who accept the views of these articles will not listen to reason, and those who have an open mind won't learn anything new from them.

This project may continue in the future, with different sources.

No comments: