Jihad: from classical islam to bin laden



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JIHAD: FROM CLASSICAL ISLAM TO BIN LADEN
Dr. Jocelyne Cesari

GOVT – E 1962

Office: Center for Middle Eastern Studies, 38 Kirkland Street, MA 02138

email: jcesari@fas.harvard.edu

Office hours: M 3-5 pm.


Meeting Times: Mondays, 5:30-7:30 pm

Location: Harvard Hall 102
Overview:

Since 9/11, no Islamic concept has raised more debates and questions than jihad, a term that is now in common use in western languages. Paradoxically, jihad is widely misunderstood, often equated with arbitrary violence, holy war or with Al-Quaida’s fight against the West.

The main purpose of this course will be to describe and analyze the different meanings and theories of jihad in the Islamic tradition. It will discuss the differences between holy war, just war and jihad. It will trace jihad from its origins in the Qu’ran and the Sunnah, and trace its evolution through classical theories of war and into different political, cultural and historical contexts. The course will review the use of jihad in Muslim empires and contemporary state systems, and will also analyze the modern concept of jihad in movements like Hamas and Hizbu’llah.

The course also considers major thinkers and theologians who have influenced the modern use of jihad, from Ibn Taymiyah to Mawdudi and Said Qutb. It will review the current use of jihad by movements like Al Quaida and discuss how and why its current use by radical Islamists and suicide bombers is a clear break from its definition in the classical tradition of Islam.




No specific knowledge of Arabic or Islam will be required. Information on the Islamic religion will be provided in class.



Requirements:

Each student is expected to:

1) read materials before each class and participate actively in the discussion during class. Required readings are available online on the course website.


  1. write response papers (2-3 pages each) for 3 of the class meetings.

  2. write a final paper (15-20 pages) on the topic or region of her/his choice.

The Final paper will be due: May 18, 2009.
GRADING:

Class participation: 20%

Response papers 35%

Final paper 45%

More than two unexplained absences will adversely affect your grade.
Recommended Introductory Books on Islam:
Rippin, Andrew, Muslims: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices, Third Edition (Routledge, 2005).
The Quran: A New Translation by M.A.S Abdel Haleem (Oxford University Press, 2004).
Arberry, A.J, The Koran Interpreted: A Translation (Touchstone, 1996).

SESSION 1/2: JIHAD IN QU’RAN AND SUNNAH

January 26th, February 2nd


Bonner, Michael, Jihad in Islamic History (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006), pp. 1-54.
Firestone, Reuven, Jihad: Origin of the Holy War in Islam (Oxford University Press, 1999), pp. 43-134.
Mottahedeh, Roy, and Ridwan al-Sayyid, “The Idea of the Jihad in Islam before the Crusades,” in The Crusades from the Perspective of Byzantium and the Muslim World, Angeliki Laiou and Roy Mottahedeh, eds. (Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2002), pp. 23-29.
*Recommended, but not required:

Schimmel, Anne Marie, Mystical Dimensions of Islam (Chapel Hill, NC, University of North Carolina Press, 1975, repr. 1976), Chapter 3, pp. 98-148.




SESSION 3: CLASSICAL THEORY OF WAR

February 9th


Crone, Patricia, God’s Rule: Government and Islam – Six Centuries of Medieval Islamic Political Thought (New York: Columbia University Press, 2004), pp. 358-385.
Peters, Rudolph, Jihad in Classical and Modern Islam (Princeton, NJ: Markus Weiner, 1996, reprint 2005), Chapter 4 (pp. 27-42).
Sachedina, Abdulaziz, “The Development of Jihad in Islamic Revelation and History,” in Cross, Crescent and Sword, Johnson and Kelsay, eds. (New York: Greenwood Press, 1990), pp. 35-50.
*Recommended, but not required:

Bonney, Richard, “Jihad and State System” in From Qu’ran to Bin Laden (New York: Palgrave, 2004), Chapter 5 (pp. 127-153).




SESSION 4: IBN TAYMIYAH AND DEFENSIVE JIHAD

First response paper due

February 23rd


Ibn Taymiyah, The Religious and Moral Doctrine of Jihad (Birmingham, UK: Maktabah Al Ansar Publications, 2001), entire piece (pp. 3-35). Translation from: al-Siyaasa al-shar`iyya fee islaah al-raa`ee wa al-raa`iyya"
Khan, Qamaruddin, The Political Thought of Ibn Taymiyah (Islamabad, Islamic Research Institute, 1973), pp. 98-185.


SESSION 5: SHI’A THEORY OF JIHAD

March 2nd


Taliqani, Mahmud, et al. (Mehdi Abedi and Gary Legenhausen, eds.), Jihad and Shahadat, Struggle and Martyrdom in Islam (Houston, TX: Institute for Research and Islamic Studies, 1986), Chapters 2, 3, and 4 (pp. 47-243).
Khomeini, Ruhollah (trans. Hamid Algar), Islam and Revolution: Writings and Declarations of Imam Khomeini (Berkeley, CA, Mizan Publications, 1981), Chapters 1-4 (pp. 27-166).


EVOLUTION OF JIHAD: FROM COLONIALISM TO POST-COLONIAL STATES
SESSION 6: MUHAMMAD IBN ABDEL WAHAB AND WAHABISM

March 9th


Excerpts from Kitab at-Tawhid, provided in class.
Algar, Hamid, Wahhabism, A Critical Essay (Oneonta, NY. Islamic Publications International, 2002), pp. 31-70.
DeLong Bas, Natana, Wahhabi Islam, From Revival and Reform to Global Jihad (New York, Oxford University Press 2004), Chapter 5 (pp. 193-225).
Abou El Fadl, Khaled, The Great Theft: Wrestling Islam from the Extremists (New York: HarperSanFrancisco, 2005), Chapter 3 (pp. 46-94).


SESSION 7: JIHAD AND COLONIALISM

March 16th


Sulaiman, Ibrahee, A Revolution in History: The Jihad of Usman Dan Fodio (New York: Mansell, 1986), Chapters 5-8 and 11 (pp. 47-99 and 122-138).
Hasan, Mushirul, “The Khilafat Movement: A Reappraisal,” in Communal and Pan-Islamic Trends in Colonial India, Mushirul Hasan, ed. (Delhi: Manohar, 1981), pp. 1-42.
Peters, Rudolph, Islam and Colonialism: The Doctrine of Jihad in Modern History (The Hague: Mouton, 1979), Chapter 3 (pp. 39-104).


MODERN THEORIES OF JIHAD
SESSION 8: Mawdudi

March 30th


Mawdudi, Sayyid Abul Al’a, Tafhim al-Qur'an, Towards Understanding the Qu’ran (New Delhi: Markazi Matkaba Islami Publishers, 1998), commentary on surahs 2 and 9 (vol. 1, pp. 41-228; vol. 3, pp. 175-277).
Mawdudi, Sayyid Abul Al’a (Kurshi Ahmad, trans.; Huda Khattab, ed.), Jihad in Islam, (Birmingham, UK: UK Islamic Mission Dawah Centre, Birmingham, 1995), entire piece (pp. 1-33).


SESSION 9: HASSAN AL BANNA, SAID QTB AND FARAJ

Second Response Paper Due

April 6th, April 13th


Al-Banna, Hasan (Charles Wendell, trans.), Five Tracts of Hasan Al Banna, 1906-1949, (Santa Barbara, CA, University of California Press, 1978), pp. 133-161.
Al-Banna, Hasan, “Jihad,” http://www.youngmuslims.ca/online_library/books/jihad/.
Moussalli, Ahmad, Moderate and Radical Islamic Fundamentalism: The Quest for Modernity, Legitimacy and the Islamic State (Gainesville, FL, University of Florida Press, 1995), Chapter 4 (pp. 107-131).
Qutb, Sayyid (Adil Salahi, trans. and ed.), Fi Zilal al-Qu’ran, In the Shade of the Qu’ran (Leicester, UK: Islamic Foundation and Islamonline), commentary on surah 9 (vol. 8, pp. 7-220).
Qutb, Sayyid. Milestones (Cedar Rapids, IA: The Mother Mosque Foundation, 1981), Chapter 4 (pp. 53-76).
Faraj, Muhammad Abd al Salam (Abu Umamah, ed.), Jihad: The Absent Obligation (Birmingham, UK: Maktabah Al Ansaar, 2000), pp. 24-85.


Session 10/11: NATIONAL VERSIONS OF JIHAD

April 20th, April 27th


Abu Rabi, Ibrahim, Intellectual Origins of Islamic Resurgence in the Modern Arab World (Albany, NY, State University of New York Press, 1996), Chapter 7 (pp. 220-47).
Norton, Augustus Richard, “Hizbu’llah: From Radicalism to Pragmatism, Middle East Policy Council Journal, 5, no. 4 (1998), http://www.mepc.org/journal_vol5/9801_norton.asp
Kramer, Martin, “The Moral Logic of Hizballah,” in Origins of Terrorism: Psychology, Ideologies, Theologies, States of Mind, Walter Reich, ed. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1990), pp. 131-157.
Saad-Ghorayeb, Amal, Hizbu’llah: Politics and Religion (Sterling, VA: Pluto Press, 2002), pp. 16-33 and 112-133.
Mishal, Shaul, and Avraham Sela, The Palestinian Hamas (New York: Columbia University Press, 2000), chapters 2, 3, and 4 (pp. 27-112).
Reuter, Christoph (Helena Ragg-Kirkby, trans.), My Life is a Weapon (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2002), chapters 4 and 5 (pp. 79-129).

Session 12: GLOBAL JIHAD

Third Response Paper Due

May 4th, 11th


Al-Zayyat, Montasser (Ahmed Fekry, trans.), The Road to Al Qaeda: The Story of the Bin Laden’s Right Hand Man (Ann Harbor, MI: Pluto Press, 2004), Chapters 1-4 (pp. 15-72).
‘Azzam, Abdullah (Brothers in Ribatt, trans.), Defense of the Muslim Land: The First Obligation after Iman, http://www.religioscope.com/info/doc/jihad/azzam_defence_2_intro.htm
Gerges, Fawaz, The Far Enemy, Why Jihad Went Global (New York: Cambridge University Press), Chapters 3-6 (pp. 119-276).
Kelsay, John, Islam and War: A Study in Comparative Ethics (Louisville, KY: Westminster/John Knox Press, 1993), Chapters 4 and 5 (pp. 57-110).
*Recommended, but not required: Edwards, David, Before Taliban: Genealogies of the Afhgan Jihad (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2002), Chapters 6 and 7 (pp. 177-286).

Session 13: CONCLUSION

May 11th


Does the distinction “little jihad” versus “great jihad” still makes sense?
Devji, Faisal, Landscapes of the Jihad: Militancy, Morality, Modernity (London: Hurst and Company, 2005), Chapter 5 (pp. 112-134).


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