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From the Publisher"This significant, welcome study of a key Islamist who was the architect of radical Islam ideology and paid the ultimate price for it under the reign of Egypt's secularist nationalist 'Abd al-Nasir focuses on the sequence of events in Qutb's intellectual career, stressing the transformations in his views of life as he evolved from a literary critic to an Islamic propagator. Musallam's analysis describes and interprets Qutb's published works, which deal with politics, literature, religion, and society from 1919 to 1952, when the Nasserist revolution took place. Qutb's early childhood and his career as poet and critic precede an account of his emergence as a student of the Qur'an, and his alienation when the Muslim Brotherhood, whose philosophical architect he had served, drove him to seek social justice. His experiences and impressions in America 1948-1950 served to harden his views. He emerged as a radical Islamist from 1952 until his 1964 execution. Qutb's martyrdom and posthumous impact contributed to the global jihad led by Islamist disciples such as Egyptians Muhammad Atta, who led the assault on the Twin Towers, and Ayman al-Zawahiri, the deputy of Bin Laden. This well-organized, easy to follow work describes how a secular intellectual was transformed into a fundamentalist Islamist. Recommended. Most levels/libraries."
"Musallam has produced a standard historical biography that clearly traces the evolution of Qutb's ideas over the course of his life."
Middle East Journal
"Adnan Musallam has written a masterful and lucid biography in From Secularism to Jihad: Sayyid Qutb and the Foundations of Radical Islamism, the only biography of Qutb in English….Musallam shows a side of Qutb, prior to becoming an Islamist, that is rarely seen….The importance of this biography is that Musallam shows that even a fairly secular writer like Qutb can become a jihadist….Musallam also details Qutb's influence on contemporary militants."
Terrorism and Political Violence
"Adnan Musallam's careful account … is compelling."
Journal of Islamic Studies