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The Shia revival : how conflicts within Islam will shape the future /
Vali Nasr.
1st ed.
New York : Norton, 2006.
287 p.
0393062112 (hardcover), 9780393062113 (hardcover)
More Details
New York : Norton, 2006.
0393062112 (hardcover)
9780393062113 (hardcover)
contents note
The other Islam : who are the Shia? -- The making of Shia politics -- The fading promise of nationalism -- Khomeini's moment -- The battle of Islamic fundamentalisms -- The tide turns -- Iraq : the first Arab Shia state -- The rise of Iran -- The battle for the Middle East .
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Library Journal on 2006-04-01:
In Islam, Shia and Sunni regard each other over a huge divide that's little understood in the West. Here to explain it is Nasr, a professor of Middle East politics at the Naval Postgraduate School's Department of National Security and a media regular. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2006-04-17:
One of the least remarked upon aspects of the war in Iraq, at least in the American press, has been how conflict and instability in that country have shaken the delicate balance of power between Sunni and Shia throughout the wider region. Nasr, professor of Middle East and South Asia politics at the Naval Postgraduate School, tackles this question head-on for a Western audience. His account begins with a cogent, engrossing introduction to the history and theology of Shia Islam, encapsulating the intellectual and political trends that have shaped the faith and its relations with the dominant Sunni strain. Nasr argues that the Shia Crescent--stretching from Lebanon and Syria through the Gulf to Iraq and Iran, finally terminating in Pakistan and India--is gathering strength in the aftermath of Saddam's fall, cementing linkages that transcend political and linguistic borders and could lead to a new map of the Middle East. While Nasr's enthusiasm for Iraq's Shiite leader Ayatollah Sistani sometimes borders on the hagiographic, his book is worthwhile reading for those seeking a primer on the second-largest Muslim sect. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Choice on 2007-02-01:
This is a remarkably clear and dispassionate analysis of contemporary relations between the two major wings of the Muslim world, Sunni and Shia. The author, a native of Iran, is a member of the faculty of the Naval Postgraduate School and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Nasr argues that the most virulent forms of Muslim fanaticism have occurred under Sunni auspices, and that they have generally been motivated by fear of Shia revivalism. He argues that this is the essence of the current turmoil in Iraq, and sees the competition between the two wings of Islam as ultimately determining the political future of the entire Middle East, with US policy relegated to the sidelines. As a dispassionate analysis, the book is superb, despite the fact that it may lean slightly toward the Shia cause. It is written in an open style free of jargon and readily accessible to the average reader. More importantly, unlike many other current books on Islam and the Middle East, this book is neither a polemic nor an apologia, nor does it get bogged down in the details of short-term political and military calculations. ^BSumming Up: Essential. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty. F. Tachau emeritus, University of Illinois at Chicago
This item was reviewed in:
Kirkus Reviews,
School Library Journal,
Library Journal, April 2006
Publishers Weekly, April 2006
Library Journal, May 2006
Booklist, July 2006
Washington Post, July 2006
Wall Street Journal, August 2006
Choice, February 2007
Reference & Research Book News, February 2007
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Bowker Data Service Summary
Vali Nasr explains the provocative rise of the Ayatollah Khomeini, the Saudi pressure on the US not to unseat Saddam Hussein in 1991, the critical role of the Ayatollah Sistani and the religious establishment in Najaf, the volatility of Pakistan, and the consequences of the shift toward Shia power through US intervention.
Long Description
The critical struggle between Shia and Sunni for the future of the Middle East. To most Western eyes, all Islamic movements look alike, and the central conflict in the Middle East is one between religion and secularism. Shockingly little has been written about the bitter divide between Shia and Sunni. Yet without understanding their ancient conflict--and its modern embodiment in the power struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia for political and spiritual leadership of the Muslim world--it is impossible to comprehend events across the so-called Shia Crescent, from East Africa through Iraq and Pakistan to India. The provocative rise of the Ayatollah Khomeini, the Saudi pressure on the United States not to unseat Saddam Hussein in 1991, the critical role of the Ayatollah Sistani and the religious establishment in Najaf (Iraq), the volatility of Pakistan today, and the consequences of the shift toward Shia power through American intervention--all this and more is explained in the light of the Shia/Sunni divide.
Table of Contents
Author's Notep. 9
Introductionp. 17
The Other Islam: Who Are the Shia?p. 31
The Making of Shia Politicsp. 63
The Fading Promise of Nationalismp. 81
Khomeini's Momentp. 119
The Battle of Islamic Fundamentalismsp. 147
The Tide Turnsp. 169
Iraq: The First Arab Shia Statep. 185
The Rise of Iranp. 211
The Battle for the Middle Eastp. 227
Notesp. 255
Acknowledgmentsp. 269
Indexp. 271
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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