Cover

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Frontmatter

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TITLE

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CONTENTS

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

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p. vii

The present volume is the outcome of a two-year workshop held at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, as part of a program on “Collective Identity, Public Sphere, and Political Order,” under the auspices of the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study in the Social Sciences...

NOTE ON TRANSLITERATION

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p. ix

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FOREWORD: THE RELIGIOUS PUBLIC SPHERE IN EARLY MUSLIM SOCIETIES

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pp. 1-8

The search for distinctive public spheres in premodern Muslim majority societies is a relatively recent undertaking. Until recently, historians and social theorists alike were deflected from considering such a possibility by conventional assumptions concerning the characteristics of “traditional” societies in...

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INTRODUCTION

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pp. 9-16

The essays included in this volume were presented and discussed at an international workshop on the Public Sphere in Muslim Societies, held at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute in October 1997. The workshop concluded two years of deliberations on the public sphere in general and its application to Muslim...

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1. THE MIHNA (INQUISITION) AND THE PUBLIC SPHERE

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pp. 17-29

The term public sphere acquired its currency and importance in the framework of European historiography, which focused on the formation of a bourgeois society.

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2. RELIGIOUS LEADERSHIP AND ASSOCIATIONS IN THE PUBLIC SPHERE OF SELJUK BAGHDAD

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pp. 31-48

During the eleventh century emerging social associations and institutions developed in Islamic societies to disseminate religious knowledge (`ilm), apply the Islamic religious law (the shari`a), and harness mysticism. During this century, a period often called the “Sunni revival,” the four Sunni schools...

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3. RELIGION IN THE PUBLIC SPHERE: RULERS, SCHOLARS, AND COMMONERS IN SYRIA UNDER ZANGID AND AYYUBID RULE (1150–1260)

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pp. 49-63

At least five tracts composed around the middle of the thirteenth century criticize the people of Damascus for preferring superogatory public prayers to the obligatory daily prayers: a manual for the inspector of public morality (muhtasib), polemical works against unwarranted innovations (bida`), and...

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4. THE PUBLIC SPHERE AND CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

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pp. 65-82

One of the more popular topics in historical sociology in recent years has been that of civil society or, more precisely, the attempt to trace autonomous aspects in earlier societies. Strong impulses in this direction have been the globally felt drive toward democratization and, more recently, the democratization of...

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5. THE QADI’S ROLE IN THE ISLAMIZATION OF SEDENTARY TRIBAL SOCIETY

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pp. 83-108

The discourse pertaining to such terms as civil society and public sphere is closely connected with the history of Western society and state.

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6. THE DYNAMICS OF SUFI BROTHERHOODS

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pp. 109-118

Islamic religious law is the totality of God’s commands that regulate the life of every Muslim in all its aspects. Islamic law is the most typical manifestation of the Islamic way of life, the core and kernel of Islam itself. Theology has never been able to achieve a comparable importance in Islam; only mysticism...

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7. THE WAQF AND THE PUBLIC SPHERE

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pp. 119-138

Much of the discussion on whether Middle Eastern states have the necessary ingredients for the development of democracy has centered on the questions of civil society and the nature of relations between the state and society. The “Oriental despotism” thesis, long in vogue in the literature, saw these two questions as inseparable: the...

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8. CONCLUDING REMARKS: PUBLIC SPHERE, CIVIL SOCIETY, AND POLITICAL DYNAMICS IN ISLAMIC SOCIETIES

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pp. 139-161

The chapters collected in this volume were presented and discussed in a workshop that took place in Jerusalem at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. The workshop constituted part of a program on “Collective Identity, Public Sphere, and Political Order,” under the auspices of the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, the Swedish Collegium...

WORKS CITED

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pp. 163-183

CONTRIBUTORS

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pp. 185-186

INDEX

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pp. 187-191