Islam in the World Today: A Handbook of Politics, Religion, Culture, and Society

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Considered the most authoritative single-volume reference work on Islam in the contemporary world, the German-language Der Islam in der Gegenwart, currently in its fifth edition, offers a wealth of authoritative information on the religious, political, social, and cultural life of Islamic nations and of Islamic immigrant communities elsewhere. Now, Cornell University Press is making this invaluable resource accessible to English-language readers.

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Overview

Considered the most authoritative single-volume reference work on Islam in the contemporary world, the German-language Der Islam in der Gegenwart, currently in its fifth edition, offers a wealth of authoritative information on the religious, political, social, and cultural life of Islamic nations and of Islamic immigrant communities elsewhere. Now, Cornell University Press is making this invaluable resource accessible to English-language readers.

More current than the latest German edition on which it is based, Islam in the World Today covers a comprehensive array of topics in concise essays by some of the world's leading experts on Islam, including:

• the history of Islam from the earliest years through the twentieth century, with particular attention to Sunni and Shi'i Islam and Islamic revival movements during the last three centuries;

• data on the advance of Islam along with current population statistics;

• Muslim ideas on modern economics, on social order, and on attempts to modernize Islamic law (shari'a) and apply it in contemporary Muslim societies;

• Islam in diaspora, especially the situation in Europe and America;

• secularism, democracy, and human rights; and

• women in Islam Twenty-four essays are each devoted to a specific Muslim country or a country with significant Muslim minorities, spanning Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and the former Soviet Union.

Additional essays illuminate Islamic culture, exploring local traditions; the languages and dialects of Muslim peoples; and art, architecture, and literature. Detailed bibliographies and indexes ensure the book's usefulness as a reference work.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This book is the most comprehensive work on contemporary Islam available worldwide, replacing almost an entire Islamic library. Being the translation into English of a German handbook, its original had already seen five editions by 2005—remarkable because German Orientalists had usually focused on historical and philological aspects of Islam. The volume takes account not only of religious/theological developments in the Islamic world but even more strongly of social, social, economic, and political events there."—Murad Wilfried Hofmann, The Muslim World Book Review (2012)

"A new and updated version of the classic Der Islam in der Gegenwart, now in its fifth edition, this first English-language translation gives non-German speakers access to one of the most authoritative works on Islam in the modern world. Editors Ende and Steinbach are distinguished professors of Islamic and Middle Eastern studies in Germany, and the 40-plus contributors come from equally distinguished academic backgrounds. The volume is divided into three parts; the first is a historical overview of the Islamic world from its beginnings in the seventh century to the present, including a description of the different sects and movements of Islam and their influence in the world today. The second, and most extensive, section discusses the political role of Islam in the modern world, Islamic economics, social systems, and law. Each of 24 essays covers a Muslim country, or a country with a significant Muslim population, in depth; communities in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, North America, and Europe are included. The final section describes Islamic culture and civilization, including art, literature, and architecture, and their intersection with the West. Multiple indexes aid the reader in finding topics, and a massive bibliography is included. The volume has few pictures and is very text dense, but the language is engaging and the translation is excellent. An impressive reference at a bargain price; essential for all public and academic libraries."—Library Journal, 15 July 2010

"The editors of the superb Islam in the World Today promise a 'handbook' on modern Islam and its peoples. What they have delivered is arguably the best single source on the world of Islam and its history and its modern condition. An indispensable guide navigated by two accomplished editors, and a group of outstanding contributors, it is a rich repository of knowledge about the doctrines and practice of Islam and its diversity and global spread."—Fouad Ajami, The Johns Hopkins University, School of Advanced International Studies, and Stanford University, author of The Foreigner's Gift: The Americans, the Arabs and the Iraqis in Iraq

"Islam in the World Today offers a comprehensive and accessible point of departure for understanding the religion, culture, history, and politics of the Muslim majority world past and present. This admirable handbook—for over twenty-five years a standard in German—is now available in English. Reliably authoritative, it is also a very good read."—Dale F. Eickelman, Ralph and Richard Lazarus Professor of Anthropology and Human Relations, Dartmouth College

"Islam in the World Today is without doubt the most comprehensive work available on contemporary Islam and all phenomena connected with the organization of Islamic societies today. The original German edition has proved tremendously useful as a textbook and is simply the book of reference on this subject for learned speakers of German, be they academics or members of the public who work in journalism, diplomacy, or in international aid organizations. By now it has introduced a whole generation of scholars who read German into the study of contemporary Islam—among them this author. This new English-language edition will certainly be picked up as a textbook and as a work of reference in advanced college courses and in graduate courses on Islam, the Middle East, political science, and other adjacent fields."—Frank Griffel, Yale University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801445712
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publication date: 4/15/2010
  • Pages: 1128
  • Product dimensions: 6.60 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 2.60 (d)

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