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Islam: An Introduction

Islam: An Introduction
Catharina Raudvere

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  • Hardback | In Stock | £62.00

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Description

Many existing introductions to Islam focus predominantly on the Middle East and on historical background at the expense of Islam as a lived faith. Assessing Islam as a truly global phenomenon, Catharina Raudvere engages thoroughly with history, (explaining the significance of the revelation of the Prophet Muhammad and the origins of the different Sunni and Shi'a groups within Islam), while also giving full and comprehensive coverage to Muslim ritual life and Islamic ethics. She discusses moral debates and modern lifestyle issues such as halal consumption, interfaith dialogue and controversy over the wearing of the veil. Diaspora communities are considered with a view to showing how norms and doctrines are understood - and sometimes contradicted - in social and ritual practice. In addition, the author focuses on the meaning and continuing application to modern life of the Quran and hadith as sources for Islamic theology (kalam) and jurisprudence (fiqh).The book gives much attention to questions of universal values, Islam and democracy, gender issues, women's rights and pluralism, contrasting the thinking of Jihadists and radical Islamism with liberal reformist voices within Islam.

Islam: An Introduction offers undergraduate students of religion and general readers a balanced, sensitive and well informed overview of the world's most intensively discussed religious and cultural tradition.

Author Info

Catharina Raudvere is Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Copenhagen. Her previous books include The Book and the Roses: Sufi Women, Visibility and Zikir in Contemporary Istanbul (I.B.Tauris, 2003) and Sufism Today: Heritage and Tradition in the Global Community (I.B.Tauris, 2008, co-edited with Leif Stenberg).

Review

'Writing an introduction to such a vast, complex and disputed topic as Islam is to say the least a challenge. But Catharina Raudvere has executed this task with great imaginativeness, while displaying due sensitivity to detail and diversity. Descriptions and analyses creatively alternate between abstract notions of theology, jurisprudence and ethics, on the one hand, and details of daily life, rituals and experiences, on the other hand. Past and present are here ingeniously knitted together, so that the long continuities of Islam as a civilization are underlined. The author succeeds in representing Islam as a living tradition: a tradition in the making right now. Though her book is written for undergraduates, it provides a level of discourse challenging enough to pique the intellectual curiosity of a wider public of academics and educated lay people. A sound balance is struck between the pedagogical objective of conveying the basic aspects of Islam and of providing critical insight into various popular narratives and research agendas related to Islam. It is one of the great merits of the book that the author’s proficiency in women’s studies compensates for the lack of such perspectives in much of the scholarly literature about Islam. Of particular benefit is the emphasis given to quotations from the Koran. This approach literally and tangibly conveys the importance to Muslims of the holy book. In sum, Raudvere offers an unusually comprehensive, richly illustrated, up-to-date and enjoyable introduction to Islam. It is easy to grasp, without being simplistic, and represents instructive reading for students and rewarding teaching material for instructors.'
Elisabeth Özdalga, Professor of Political Science, Bilkent University, author of The Veiling Issue: Official Secularism and Popular Islam in Modern Turkey

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd.
Series: I.B. Tauris Introductions to Religion

Paperback
ISBN: 9781848850842
Publication Date: 30 Nov 2014
Number of Pages: 304
Height: 216
Width: 134
Illustrations: 20 integrated bw illustrations, 3 maps

Hardback
ISBN: 9781848850835
Publication Date: 30 Nov 2014
Number of Pages: 304
Height: 216
Width: 134
Illustrations: 20 integrated bw illustrations, 3 maps

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