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Nationalism And The 'New Islam'

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Chapter Summary

Resolving as an intermediate position between Shaikh and Jalal, the author argues that the nationalisation of identities is as firmly driven by a change in doctrine from 'old' to 'new' as by the machinations of the colonial regime and the socio-political interests of Muslims. In this shift, however, the 'communitarian/communal' dichotomy is false. In the absence of the 'old' Intoxicated Way, whose 'absolute immanence', in particular, legitimated customary law, antinomian perspectives and latitudinarian attitudes without compromising doctrinal Islam, the 'Inner' domain's 'New Islam', Intoxicated and Sober, provided greater impetus to reform and engage in religiously collective political activity, but lost most of the 'old' mechanisms by which to accommodate the regional, sectarian and other divides that shaped the 'Outer'. The 'New Muslim' is one who seeks 'unity', as suggested by consensus on the primacy of religious community, irrespective of acknowledged class and regional distinctions.

Keywords: colonial regime; New Islam; New Muslim; religious community



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