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Debating the War of Ideas

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The War of Ideas is being fought both within Islamic societies and between some Muslim voices and the West. The War of Ideas is a struggle between moral claims, political philosophies, and historical interpretations that compete for assent within a society and across borders. Like the ideological component of the Cold War, the War of Ideas is about the fundamental principles of human society, from the basis for law and structures of governance to gender relations and the nexus of religion and politics. It is a ...

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Overview

The War of Ideas is being fought both within Islamic societies and between some Muslim voices and the West. The War of Ideas is a struggle between moral claims, political philosophies, and historical interpretations that compete for assent within a society and across borders. Like the ideological component of the Cold War, the War of Ideas is about the fundamental principles of human society, from the basis for law and structures of governance to gender relations and the nexus of religion and politics. It is a global War: the foes have resorted to arms to protect and promote their worldview. This book brings together some of the most important voices from different partisan, theoretical and religious perspectives to argue and forecast the next phase in the War of Ideas.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This book is a major contribution to our understanding of what is at stake in current conflicts between the West and Islamist extremism. From a variety of viewpoints—many of them controversial—the contributors to this volume display in equal measure the barriers to, and possibilities for, dialogue. This important book assists us in evaluating where we have been and where we are going.”—Jean Bethke Elshtain, author of Sovereignty: God, State and Self (her Gifford Lectures, 2008)

Debating the War of Ideas is a welcome contribution to the raging debate in this country and overseas about the rise of religion as a policy driver in the behavior of states and non-state actors. The book brings together for the first time a collection of essays spanning the entire ideological spectrum among academic experts on the nature of the war of ideas among and between religions and religion-based cultures and offers useful strategies suggestions to our policymakers on how to engage different religions, cultures, and civil society institutions rooted in religion.”—Emile Nakhleh, author of A Necessary Engagement:  Reinventing America's Relations with the Muslim World

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230619364
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 12/22/2009
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Eric Patterson, Ph.D. is Assistant Director of the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs as well as Visiting Assistant Professor of Government at Georgetown University. He is also the lead author for the Chicago Council on Global Affairs’ Taskforce on Religion and U.S. Foreign Policy. Prior to this he was a White House Fellow, a Foster Fellow at the U.S. Department of State, and on faculty at Vanguard University in California. Patterson writes and teaches on ethics and security, religion and world affairs, and U.S. foreign policy. He is the author or editor of five books, including Christianity and Power Politics Today: Christian Realism and Contemporary Political Dilemmas (2008) and Just War Thinking: Morality and Pragmatism in the Struggle Against Contemporary Threats (2007). Patterson is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is an officer in the California Air National Guard.

John P. Gallagher is Director in the Office of Iraq and Afghanistan Affairs at the National Security Council, where he previously served as a 2007-2008 White House Fellow. Prior to the Fellowship, John was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Sciences at West Point where he taught courses on Western liberalism and political Islam, American politics, and counterterrorism. A recipient of the William F. Murdy Award for teaching excellence, John was also the Director of West Point's national-merit scholarship program, mentoring twenty-two scholarship winners over two years. An Army infantry officer who has served with the 82nd Airborne Division and 1st Armored Division, John graduated from West Point in 1994 and holds two master's degrees with distinction from The University of Chicago, one in Public Policy and one in Political Theory. He is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was named a 2007 Young Leader by the American Swiss Foundation and a delegate to the American Academy of Achievement's 2008 International Achievement Summit.

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Table of Contents

Approaching the War of Ideas—John Gallagher and Eric Patterson
• Jihadism’s War on Democracy—Walid Phares
• “Dangerous Concepts” and the Struggle Within: Reclaiming State and Politics from the Islamists—Maajid Nawaz
• Sharing With Equals: Modernity, Fundamentalism, and the Future—Karen Armstrong
Taqiyya: War and Deceit in Islam—Raymond Ibrahim
• Debates over Just War and Jihad: Ideas, Interpretations, and Implications Across Cultures—James Turbaner Johnson
• The War of Ideas: The Role of the “Afterlife”—Alan M. Dershowitz* The Clash of Civilizations?—Akbar Ahmed
• Debating Absolutism and Pluralism in Contemporary Islam—Asma Afsaruddin
• Democracy, Religion, and the War of Ideas—Eric Patterson
• Inter-civilizational Conflict between Value Systems and Concepts of Order: Exploring the Islamic Humanist Potential for a Peace of Ideas—Bassam Tibi
• The War of Ideas as Therapy: Reflections on a Eureka Moment in the “War on Terror”—Abdelwahab El-Affendi
• Waging Trans-epistemological Warfare—Jarret M. Brachman
• Counter-radicalization and Europe’s New Security Dilemma—Lorenzo Vidino
• The Struggle for Islamism in the Levant: The Case of Northern Lebanon—Bernard Rougier
• Dissonance and Denial: U.S. Foreign Policy and the War of Ideas—Robert Spencer

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