Islam and the Challenge of Civilization by Abdelwahab Meddeb

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Those well-versed in Islamic Studies will enjoy the erudite read, masterfully rendered into English by Kuntz, a seasoned translator.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

Meddeb wages a war of interpretations in this book demonstrating that Muslims cannot join the concert of nations unless they set aside outmoded notions such as jihad, and realize that the feuding among monotheisms must give way to the more important issue of what it means to be a citizen in today's post-religious global setting.

Abdelwahab Meddeb makes an urgent case for an Islamic reformation, located squarely in Western Europe, now home to millions of Muslims, where Christianity and Judaism have come to coexist with secular humanism and positivist law. He is not advocating "moderate" Islam, which he characterizes as thinly disguised Wahabism, but rather an Islam inspired by the great Sufi thinkers, whose practice of religion was not bound by doctrine.

To accomplish this, Meddeb returns to the doctrinal question of the text as transcription of the uncreated word of God and calls upon Muslims to distinguish between Islam's spiritual message and the temporal, material, and historically grounded origins of its founding scriptures. He contrasts periods of Islamic history--when philosophers and theologians engaged in lively dialogue with other faiths and civilizations and contributed to transmitting the Hellenistic tradition to early modern Europe--with modern Islam's collective amnesia of this past.
 

About Abdelwahab Meddeb

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Abdelwahab Meddeb, novelist and poet, teaches comparative literature at the Universit Paris X (Nanterre). Meddeb has published over twenty books in French. His La Maladie de l'islam, winner of the Prix Franois Mauriac, has been translated into English as The Malady of Islam. Jane Kuntz has a doctorate in French from the University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign, and has translated eight works of contemporary French fiction for Dalkey Archive Press.
 
Published June 3, 2013 by Fordham University Press. 190 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Religion & Spirituality. Non-fiction
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Publishers Weekly

Above average
on May 27 2013

Those well-versed in Islamic Studies will enjoy the erudite read, masterfully rendered into English by Kuntz, a seasoned translator.

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