Islam and Politics in Central Asia

Islam and Politics in Central Asia

by Mehrdad Haghayeghi
     
 

Islam and Politics in Central Asia offers a new and sophisticated look at the role of Islam in the loosely interrelated, newly independent republics of Central Asia. The widely-held assumption that these republics would fall under the sway of fanatical Muslim clergy controlled by neighboring Iran has not been entirely accurate. In reality, there has been a far greater… See more details below

Overview

Islam and Politics in Central Asia offers a new and sophisticated look at the role of Islam in the loosely interrelated, newly independent republics of Central Asia. The widely-held assumption that these republics would fall under the sway of fanatical Muslim clergy controlled by neighboring Iran has not been entirely accurate. In reality, there has been a far greater religious diversity in the region than was first anticipated. Misconceptions about the power of Islam in Central Asia have been largely due to the scarcity of information under the closed Soviet system and have been reinforced by the peripheral status of the region in the geopolitical calculations of the West. Certainly, Islam will still play a central cohesive role in the area since it provides an alternative to the largely discredited power of communism; however, secular trends nurtured under Soviet rule, as well as those presented by Turkey and China, will be just as significant. Central Asia is currently faced with a difficult future. In terms of its natural wealth and well-educated workforce, it has the potential to become a highly dynamic component of the post-Cold War world. However, it also has the potential to become an area of chronic instability as the continuing civil war in Tajikistan has demonstrated. By taking all of these factors into account, Islam and Politics in Central Asia presents the essential guide to the politics of this fascinating region.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Examines the role of Islam in the newly independent republics of Central Asia, particularly addressing the fact that they have not, despite dire predictions, followed the radical fundamentalist path of neighboring Iran. Explains that though Islam provides a cohesive framework for the region and daily life, people there have been heavily exposed to secular influences from the Soviet Union, Turkey, and China. The misconception is traced to the lack of available information under the Soviets and the continued perception of the area as peripheral by the West. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312096229
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan
Publication date:
04/28/1995
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.83(w) x 8.51(h) x 0.97(d)

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