Turkish Islam and the Secular State: The Gulen Movement / Edition 1

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Works from the first conference on the Fethullah Gülen movement in Turkey.

This book examines recent reformations of Islam and culture in Turkey and the successful Islamic modernist Fethullah Gülen movement. Combining a devotion to Islam with love for modern learning, especially modern science, the Fethullah Gülen movement has gained a substantial following in Turkey over the past twenty years, and since 1991 has achieved great influence in Central Asia through the establishment of schools. Contributors explore the origins and establishment of the Gülen movement, its intellectual and religious formation, its spread across Turkey and Central Asia, and its influence on citizens outside the movement, including on leading Turkish politicians.


  • "Islam in the Public Sphere: The Case of the Nur Movement," M. Hakan Yavuz
  • "The Gülen Movement: The Turkish Puritans," M. Hakan Yavuz
  • "The Gülen Movement's Islamic Ethic of Education," Bekim Agai
  • "Fethullah Gülen as Educator," Thomas Michel "Following in the Footsteps of Fethullah Gülen: Three Women Teachers Tell Their Stories," Elisabeth Özdalga
  • "Fethullah Gülen's Search for a Middle Way Between Modernity and Muslim Tradition," Ahmet Kuru
  • "Diaspora and Stability: Constitutive Elements in a Body of Knowledge," Yasin Aktay
  • "Fethullah Gülen: A Sufi in His Own Way," Zeki Sar Toprak
  • "The Making of Enemy and Friend: Fethullah Gülen's National Security Identity," Hasan Kösebalaban
  • "National Loyalties and International Undertakings: The Case of the Gülen Community in Kazakistan," Berna Turam
  • "Ijtihad and Tajdid by Conduct: The Gülen Movement," Ihsan Yilmaz
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815630401
  • Publisher: Syracuse University Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/2003
  • Series: Contemporary Issues in the Middle East Ser.
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

M. Hakan Yavuz is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Utah.

John L. Esposito is the founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and professor of religion and international affairs and Islamic studies at Georgetown University. He is the author of Islam and Politics, Fourth Edition, and Women in Muslim Family Law, Second Edition, also published by Syracuse University Press.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Islam in Turkey: Retreat from the Secular Path?
1 Islam in the Public Sphere: The Case of the Nur Movement 1
2 The Gulen Movement: The Turkish Puritans 19
3 The Gulen Movement's Islamic Ethic of Education 48
4 Fethullah Gulen as Educator 69
5 Following in the Footsteps of Fethullah Gulen: Three Women Teachers Tell Their Stories 85
6 Fethullah Gulen's Search for a Middle Way Between Modernity and Muslim Tradition 115
7 Diaspora and Stability: Constitutive Elements in a Body of Knowledge 131
8 Fethullah Gulen: A Sufi in His Own Way 156
9 The Making of Enemy and Friend: Fethullah Gulen's National-Security Identity 170
10 National Loyalties and International Undertakings: The Case of the Gulen Community in Kazakhstan 184
11 Ijtihad and Tajdid by Conduct: The Gulen Movement 208
12 Fethullah Gulen: Transcending Modernity in the New Islamic Discourse 238
App Abant Declarations 251
References 257
Index 275
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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2003

    a timely book

    Turkey is known with its peaceful Islamic movements and among them is the Nurcu movement to which Gulen belongs. Although the Turkish political establishment views Gulen's educational activities with suspicion, he preaches tolerance and co-existence in a pluralistic cultural environment. The book appears to be the first study, a compilation of good articles on the movement he leads. Some of the articles concentrate more on his ideas and views than analyzing the movement itself. Particularly noteworthy are pieces by Hakan Yavuz, Yasin Aktay, Elisabeth Ozdalga, Ahmet Kuru, John Voll and Hasan Kosebalaban. Overall the book is a timely study particularly in the context of strong anti-islamic movements around the world, with the rhetoric that Islam breeds violence. The book shows that this accusation is largely false using the empirical case of Gulen movement. It reminds the readers that Islam like any other religion is interpreted in a particular context shaped by political, social and economic conditions.

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