Islam in the News

by Sarah Graham-Brown
published in MER107

Edward W. Said, Covering Islam (London: Routledge & Regan Paul, 1981).

Edward Said’s Covering Islam is one part of his project to analyze aspects of the Western view of Islam and the Middle East. Orientalism, the first and most substantial of these books, traced the evolution of European attitudes to the cultures of the Middle East from medieval times to the present. It examined specifically how US academics and policymakers adapted the legacy of European orientalism to the needs of US imperialism in the post-1945 era.

Ahmed Mohamed, Liberal Rhetoric and Obama Administration Propaganda

by Leili Kashani | published September 28, 2015 - 4:31pm

Most readers will know by now that a 14-year-old kid named Ahmed Mohamed was recently arrested in Irving, Texas for, well, for making a clock while Muslim. Ahmed, an aspiring engineer and a robotics enthusiast, had built a simple digital clock and brought it to his ninth-grade high school classes, hoping to impress his teachers. Instead, one of them called the cops on him, and with the consent of the school principal, five police officers arrested him and took him to a detention center in handcuffs. Ahmed has reported that one officer he’d never seen before looked at him and said, “Yup.

"The Masses Speak the Language of Religion to Express Themselves Politically"

by Mohamed Sid-Ahmed
published in MER102

Mohamed Sid Ahmed is an Egyptian journalist and left opposition leader. He is a member of the secretariat of Tagammu‘, the National Progressive Unionist Party, and is a representative of the party’s Marxist component. He was an editorial writer with al-Akhbar from 1965 to 1968 and chief political analyst of al-Ahram through 1976. He is the author of When the Guns Fall Silent (1976J, and other books. He was imprisoned several times between 1959 and 1974, and narrowly escaped arrest in early September 1981. He spoke with MERIP editors Judith Tucker, Joe Stork and Penny Johnson, and with Selma Botman, a friend of MERIP, in Cambridge, Massachusetts on October 19, 1981.

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From the Editors

by The Editors
published in MER102

It is no easy task to comprehend the significance of religion in its political dimension. Here in the US, for instance, Black churches have played a vital and progressive role in the struggle for political and civil rights. More recently, fundamentalist and revivalist Christian churches have participated intimately in advancing the political fortunes of the new right. Other church people have been in the forefront of the campaigns against nuclear weapons. In Central and South America, “liberation theology” emerged out of fierce mass struggles against political oppression and. economic degradation, while the Catholic hierarchy remained committed, for the most part, to the ruling classes.

Life and Death in the Graves of Mecca and Medina

by John M. Willis | published October 31, 2014 - 2:51pm

On September 1 The Independent published a piece by Andrew Johnson detailing plans by the Saudi state to move the final resting place of the Prophet Muhammad from the Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina to an unmarked grave in the nearby Baqi‘ cemetery as part of an ongoing scheme to expand the mosques of the two holy cities.

Hadi al-`Alawi, Scion of the Two Civilizations

by Mohammed al-Sudairi
published in MER270

In the 1950s, the People’s Republic of China began to host a small community of Arab scholars and journalists, recruited mostly through “revolutionary” channels like the FLN, the PLO, and the Iraqi and Sudanese Communist Parties. These experts were brought to China with the explicit purpose of editing and translating texts, as well as providing Arabic-language instruction at Chinese media, propaganda and educational institutions. This select group included a number of writers and intellectuals, such as Kadhim al-Samawi, Hanna Mina, Sheikh Jalal al-Hanafi and Hadi al-‘Alawi, the last of whom left the deepest mark on twentieth-century Arab intellectual life.

Muslim Activist Encounters in Meiji Japan

by Shuang Wen
published in MER270

As one of the political, commercial and intellectual centers of Asia, Japan at the turn of the twentieth century was an important arena for the intersection of ideas about modernism, nationalism and anti-colonial politics. Though Cairo, Istanbul and Mecca had long been the capitals of scholarship and cross-cultural interaction in the Islamic world, Meiji-era Japan was a site of key encounters between Muslims from China, South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. Drawn together by a common interest in Islamic revival and nation building that transcended linguistic and cultural differences, these activists established various Muslim organizations in Japan and saw Islam as a way to unify Asian peoples.

Chez Vous, Gitmo to Guangzhou

by Darryl Li | published May 2, 2014 - 12:47pm

We at MERIP are excited about the issue of Middle East Report on China and the Middle East coming out next week, featuring the work of two of my mentors, Engseng Ho and MER editor Cemil Aydın. The issue will address linkages between China and the region, from trade in oil and manufactured consumer items to ideological exchanges under the signs of Marx, Mao and Islam.

Mortimer, Faith and Power

by Bassam Tibi
published in MER120

Edward Mortimer, Faith and Power: The Politics of Islam (New York: Random House, 1982).

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Baku's Shaikh-ul-Islam

by Fred Halliday , Maxine Molyneux
published in MER138

Shaikh-ul-Islam Pashazada Allahshukur Hummatoglu is chairman of the Board of Management of Caucasian Muslims. Fred Halliday and Maxine Molyneux interviewed him in Baku in July 1984.

How are Soviet Muslims organized?

There are four separate Islamic religious bodies in the Soviet Union. Three of these are for Sunnis. Here in the Transcaucasian region, comprising Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia, Shi‘i Muslims are the majority. Their leader is the shaikh-ul-Islam, the position I now hold.

Are you appointed by the state?

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