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Analysing the current hegemony of Erdoğan’s AKP in Turkey, Cihan Tuğal argues that the party has been the agent of a classic passive revolution, effectively shoring up the Kemalist state. Paradoxes of ‘Americanization with Muslim characteristics’, against the backdrop of Western military intervention in the Middle East.
How Ethnic is Ethnic Cleansing?
How ethnic is ‘ethnic cleansing’? From Cyprus to Andalusia, Ireland to Bosnia, Pakistan to Palestine, Jack Goody finds religion—inherently threatened by apostasy or conversion—a stronger marker of communal conflict and mass expulsion than an ill-defined ethnicity.
The Novel, Politics and Islam
The astonishing story of the uproar in Egypt over the publication of a Syrian novel set in Algeria—a work of literature as trigger for political crisis and polemical turmoil, two decades after it was written, in a landscape completely transformed. Haydar Haydar’s fiction as tuning-fork of stark dissonances of time and outlook in the Arab world.
Secularism and the State: Towards Clarity and Global Comparison
Debates about the process of secularization have, in recent years, centred on the work of a group of sociologists and historians, mostly British, who have put forth and debated what is known as ‘the secularization thesis’.footnote1 This correlates modernization with secularization, and generally measures secularization primarily through declining church membership . . . read more
‘This is the Revelation given by God to Jesus Christ. It was given to him so that he might show his servants what must shortly happen.’footnote1 Thus commences the last book of the New Testament, the Revelation of John. A short prologue is followed by messages to seven churches in . . . read more
Marx and the Undiscovered Country
Religion has always had a twofold nature, public and private, and its two selves reinforce each other. On the one hand it is a social cement, joining together multifarious human beings as the mortar of an old castle wall holds together bits of stone of all shapes and sizes. On . . . read more
Reply to Critics
It is a great honour to have elicited comments from such a distinguished assembly of scholars and thinkers, and I feel greatly moved by this.footnote1 The papers range over a large number of topics and more than one of them leaves me feeling out of my depth, conceptually or in . . . read more
The Crisis of Algerian Nationalism and the Rise of Islamic Integralism
By cancelling the elections planned for the end of 1991, banning the Front Islamique du Salut (fis), arresting its top leadersfootnote1 and detaining thousands of activists, the Algerian regime prevented an Islamist government from being elected, but did not succeed in forcing the theocratic djinn back into its bottle. Enough . . . read more
The Formation of Christendom
Judith Herrin has given us in this substantial but very readable book a superb survey of the period in which the conditions for the emergence of mediaeval Europe came together—roughly the four centuries from 450 to 850 a.d.footnote1 In one sense the book is also a contribution to the genealogy . . . read more
The first session of the Vatican Council was convened by John xxiii, the second session by his successor, Paul vi. This change of leadership has been sharply felt. In both sessions the vast majority of Council fathers have shown themselves, in both debates and votes, strongly in favour of the . . . read more
The Christs of Faith and the Jesus of History
Ajoke has been going the rounds in theological circles for some time now. It goes like this. The Pope was told by the Cardinals that the remains of Jesus had been dug up in Palestine. There was no room for doubt: all the archaeologists, scholars and experts were agreed. Teaching . . . read more
The history of the early Christian church was traditionally written by clergymen—ecclesiastical historians or theologians—who had their own methods, criteria and style. In particular they tended to follow the example of their founder, Eusebius, in taking a teleological view of their subject, and consequently in discerning in the history of . . . read more