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The Islamic Threat : Myth or Reality? (Second Edition)
by:John L. Esposito
Are Islam and the West on an inevitable collision course? What are the implications of events in Algeria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and the West? Recent events such as the World Trade Center bombing, Algeria's civil war and the fundamentalist Islamic government that might follow, Sunni-Shii fratricide in Pakistan, and reports of terrorist networks...
Are Islam and the West on an inevitable collision course? What are the implications of events in Algeria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and the West? Recent events such as the World Trade Center bombing, Algeria's civil war and the fundamentalist Islamic government that might follow, Sunni-Shii fratricide in Pakistan, and reports of terrorist networks with bases in the West only enhance the Western view of Muslims as medieval fanatics, and feed talk of an impending clash of civilizations. From the Ayatollah Khomeini to Saddam Hussein and Sheik Abdul Rahman, the image of Islam as a militant, expansionist, and rabidly anti-American religion has gripped the minds of Western governments and media. But these perceptions, John L. Esposito writes, stem from a long history of mutual distrust, criticism, and condemnation, and they are far too simplistic to help us understand one of the most important issues of our times. In this second edition of The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality? Esposito, a leading expert in political Islam, analyzes the fall out from these recent events from North Africa to Southeast Asia and places the challenge of Islam in critical perspective. Exploring the vitality of Islam as a global force and the history of its relations with the western world, Esposito investigates just how pervasive the threat of Muslim radicalism actually is. He offers a systematic assessment of politics in key nations (including Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Pakistan, Libya, Lebanon, Sudan, and Tunisia) and in particular Islamic movements (from moderates to radicals), demonstrating the diversity of the Islamic resurgence--and the mistakes western analysts make in assuming a hostile, monolithic Islam. Esposito examines the potential challenge or threat of Islam and looks at the issues facing Islam and the West in the 1990s, from democratization and pluralism to American foreign policy, human rights, and the status of women and minorities in the context of Islamic revivalism. Timely and compelling, The Islamic Threat is essential reading for all those interested in "overcoming the increasingly dangerous gap separating Western and Islamic societies."
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