Secularism and the Arab world : 1850-1939 /
Nazik Saba Yared.
London : Saqi, 2002.
251 p. ; 23 cm.
More Details
London : Saqi, 2002.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. 201-242) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Nazik Saba Yared is a Lebanese scholar and writer. She is the author of seven novels (all in Arabic) and a number of works on classical Arabic literature. She was a recipient of the Prince Claus award in 1998
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2003-05-01:
Yared surveys writings by ten Lebanese, two Syrian, and four Egyptian authors to trace the influence of Western secular thought on the Arab world. Nine of the Lebanese are Christians, one a woman; the tenth is a Druze woman. The Syrians and Egyptians are Muslim males. On the premise that Western secular influence can first be noticed in Arab writings in the mid-19th century, Yared begins her analysis there but does not explain why she ends it at the beginning of WWII. Albert Hourani's examination of these same authors, except for the two women, plus others in Arabic Thought in the Liberal Age, 1789-1939 (1962), receives a mere footnote reference. While he treated authors individually, providing a coherent and instructive account, Yared focuses on what they say about various topics she associates with secularism such as anticlericalism, women, education, progress, and literature. The approach does not work well, mainly because it provides only disconnected snippets of each author's thought. Typographical and substantive errors weaken the book. For example, Ahmad Lutfi al-Sayyid translated Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics into Arabic, not "De Re Publica"; Aristotle wrote no book by that title. ^BSumming Up: Not recommended. C. E. Butterworth University of Maryland College Park
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, May 2003
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Bowker Data Service Summary
This is a study of secularism and the Arab world from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century when secularism was part of the political, social and educational systems in many Arab countries.
Main Description
This book attempts to demonstrate that secular Arabic thought is not a novelty. Although much of what is being written in the Arab world today is of a religious and traditional nature, the beginnings of secularism can be traced back to the writings of various thinkers, mainly from Egypt, Lebanon, and Syria.This study spans the period from the mid-19th century - when the first Arab intellectuals came into contact with Western thought and civilization - to the mid-20th century when secularism became part of the political, social and educational systems in many Arab countries.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgementsp. 7
Introductionp. 9
Historical and Social Backgroundp. 13
Separation of the Spiritual and Temporal Powersp. 24
Religion and its Role. Anticlericalismp. 42
The Individualp. 66
The Status of Womenp. 81
The Role of Education and Knowledgep. 95
Change, Progress and Civilizationp. 107
Government and Lawp. 128
Nationalismp. 149
Language, Literature, Artp. 181
Conclusionp. 194
Notesp. 201
Bibliographyp. 234
Indexp. 243
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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