Reliving Karbala

Martyrdom in South Asian Memory

Author: Syed Akbar Hyder

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190451807

Category: Religion

Page: 272

View: 3026


In 680 C.E., a small band of the Prophet Muhammads family and their followers, led by his grandson, Husain, rose up in a rebellion against the ruling caliph, Yazid. The family and its supporters, hopelessly outnumbered, were massacred at Karbala, in modern-day Iraq. The story of Karbala is the cornerstone of institutionalized devotion and mourning for millions of Shii Muslims. Apart from its appeal to the Shii community, invocations of Karbala have also come to govern mystical and reformist discourses in the larger Muslim world. Indeed, Karbala even serves as the archetypal resistance and devotional symbol for many non-Muslims. Until now, though, little scholarly attention has been given to the widespread and varied employment of the Karbala event. In Reliving Karbala, Syed Akbar Hyder examines the myriad ways that the Karbala symbol has provided inspiration in South Asia, home to the worlds largest Muslim population. Rather than a unified reading of Islam, Hyder reveals multiple, sometimes conflicting, understandings of the meaning of Islamic religious symbols like Karbala. He ventures beyond traditional, scriptural interpretations to discuss the ways in which millions of very human adherents express and practice their beliefs. By using a panoramic array of sources, including musical performances, interviews, nationalist drama, and other literary forms, Hyder traces the evolution of this story from its earliest historical origins to the beginning of the twenty-first century. Today, Karbala serves as a celebration of martyrdom, a source of personal and communal identity, and even a tool for political protest and struggle. Hyder explores how issues related to gender, genre, popular culture, class, and migrancy bear on the cultivation of religious symbols. He assesses the manner in which religious language and identities are negotiated across contexts and continents. At a time when words like martyrdom, jihad, and Shiism are being used and misused for political reasons, this book provides much-needed scholarly redress. Through his multifaceted examination of this seminal event in Islamic history, Hyder offers an original, complex, and nuanced view of religious symbols.

Dancing with the Nation

Courtesans in Bombay Cinema

Author: Ruth Vanita

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1501334425

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 232

View: 3304


Indian cinema is the only body of world cinema that depicts courtesans as important characters. In early films courtesan characters transmitted Indian classical dance, music and aesthetics to large audiences. They represent the nation's past, tracing their heritage to the fourth-century Kamasutra and to nineteenth-century courtly cultures, but they are also the first group of modern women in Hindi films. They are working professionals living on their own or in matrilineal families. Like male protagonists, they travel widely and develop networks of friends and chosen kin. They have relations with men outside marriage and become single mothers. Courtesan films are heroine-oriented and almost every major female actor has played this role. Challenging received wisdom, Vanita demonstrates that a larger number of courtesans in Bombay cinema are Hindu and indeterminate than are Muslim, and that films depict their culture as hybrid Hindu-Muslim, not Islamicate. Courtesans speak in the ambiguous voice of the modern nation, inviting spectators to seize pleasure here and now but also to search for the meaning of life. Vanita's groundbreaking study of courtesans and courtesan imagery in 235 films brings fresh evidence to show that the courtesan figure shapes the modern Indian erotic, political and religious imagination.

The Shi‘a in Modern South Asia

Author: Justin Jones,Ali Usman Qasmi

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 110710890X

Category: History

Page: 218

View: 3848


""Explores various Shi'i communities across South Asia, revealing the many forms of Shi'i religion within this important region, and examining the responses of these communities to the many transformations of the modern world"--Provided by publisher"--

Living Islam

Muslim Religious Experience in Pakistan's North-West Frontier

Author: Magnus Marsden

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9781139448376

Category: Social Science

Page: N.A

View: 3778


Popular representations of Pakistan's North West Frontier have long featured simplistic images of tribal blood feuds, fanatical religion, and the seclusion of women. The rise to power of the radical Taliban regime in neighbouring Afghanistan enhanced the region's reputation as a place of anti-Western militancy. Magnus Marsden is an anthropologist who has immersed himself in the lives of the Frontier's villagers for more than ten years. His evocative study of the Chitral region challenges all these stereotypes. Through an exploration of the everyday experiences of both men and women, he shows that the life of a good Muslim in Chitral is above all a mindful life, enhanced by the creative force of poetry, dancing and critical debate. Challenging much that has been assumed about the Muslim world, this 2005 study makes a powerful contribution to the understanding of religion and politics both within and beyond the Muslim societies of southern Asia.

Jains in the World

Religious Values and Ideology in India

Author: John E. Cort

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780198030379

Category: Religion

Page: 288

View: 9268


"There is no doubt that the wealth of new data and ideas offered in this exquisite book provides the deepest insights yet into the contemporary religious world of Jain laity. It will serve for some time as a paradigmatic monograph for future empirical studies of Jain religious life." --Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies "Jains in the World is a significant and welcome ethnography of contemporary Jains in western India by the most prominent scholar of Jainism in North America. This book is a must for scholars of South Asian religions and will provide scholars of Hindu traditions fine grounding both in a central dialectic of Jain thought and in contemporary Jain praxis." --International Journal of Hindu Studies "A valuable addition to the literature on Jainism as a living faith. Since it has the additional merits of being clearly written, attractively illustrated, and free of unnecessary theoretical baggage, it should serve as a good introduction to this tradition for college students." --Journal of the American Oriental Society "A must-read for understanding, by and large, the ritual world of the Jains. He has succeeded in proving that the concept of well-being is as central to the Jains' moral universe as their more entrenched pursuit of the goal of liberation of soul from karmic bondage."--History of Religions "An essential read for students and scholars of Jainism. . . . it identifies and defines a realm of value in Jainism strongly alluded to by recent scholarship, but which, until now, had not been explicitly stated. For this reason Jains in the World will doubtless prove to be a fundamental turning point in the development of Jaina studies."-- The Journal of Religion This book presents a detailed fieldwork-based study of the ancient Indian religion of Jainism. Drawing on field research in northern Gujarat and on the study of both ancient Sanskrit and Prakrit and modern vernacular Jain religious literature, John Cort provides a rounded portrait of the religion as it is practiced today.

Negotiating Languages

Urdu, Hindi, and the Definition of Modern South Asia

Author: Walter N. Hakala

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231542127

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 336

View: 8645


Prior to the nineteenth century, South Asian dictionaries, glossaries, and vocabularies reflected a hierarchical vision of nature and human society. By the turn of the twentieth century, the modern dictionary had democratized and politicized language. Compiled "scientifically" through "historical principles," the modern dictionary became a concrete symbol of a nation's arrival on the world stage. Following this phenomenon from the late seventeenth century to the present, Negotiating Languages casts lexicographers as key figures in the political realignment of South Asia under British rule and in the years after independence. Their dictionaries document how a single, mutually intelligible language evolved into two competing registers—Urdu and Hindi—and became associated with contrasting religious and nationalist goals. Each chapter in this volume focuses on a key lexicographical work and its fateful political consequences. Recovering texts by overlooked and even denigrated authors, Negotiating Languages provides insight into the forces that turned intimate speech into a potent nationalist politics, intensifying the passions that partitioned the Indian subcontinent.

Places in Motion

The Fluid Identities of Temples, Images, and Pilgrims

Author: Jacob N. Kinnard

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199359687

Category: Religion

Page: 320

View: 3242


Jacob Kinnard offers an in-depth examination of the complex dynamics of religiously charged places. Focusing on several important shared and contested pilgrimage places-Ground Zero and Devils Tower in the United States, Ayodhya and Bodhgaya in India, Karbala in Iraq-he poses a number of crucial questions. What and who has made these sites important, and why? How are they shared, and how and why are they contested? What is at stake in their contestation? How are the particular identities of place and space established? How are individual and collective identity intertwined with space and place? Challenging long-accepted, clean divisions of the religious world, Kinnard explores specific instances of the vibrant messiness of religious practice, the multivocality of religious objects, the fluid and hybrid dynamics of religious places, and the shifting and tangled identities of religious actors. He contends that sacred space is a constructed idea: places are not sacred in and of themselves, but are sacred because we make them sacred. As such, they are in perpetual motion, transforming themselves from moment to moment and generation to generation. Places in Motion moves comfortably across and between a variety of historical and cultural settings as well as academic disciplines, providing a deft and sensitive approach to the topic of sacred places, with awareness of political, economic, and social realities as these exist in relation to questions of identity. It is a lively and much needed critical advance in analytical reflections on sacred space and pilgrimage.

Good Muslim, Bad Muslim

Islam , the USA, and the Global War Against Terror

Author: Mahmood Mamdani

Publisher: Orient Blackswan

ISBN: 9788178241111

Category: Afghanistan

Page: 304

View: 7085


In This Brilliant Look At The Rise Of Political Islam, The Distinguished Political Scientist And Anthropologist Mahmood Mamdani Dispels The Notion Of `Good` (Secular And Westernized) Muslims As Against `Bad` (Premodern, Fanati) Muslims. He Argues That Such Judgements Emerge Out Of Politics Rather Than From Cultural Or Religious Identity.

A Millennium of Classical Persian Poetry

A Guide to the Reading & Understanding of Persian Poetry from the Tenth to the Twentieth Century

Author: Wheeler McIntosh Thackston

Publisher: Ibex Publishers, Inc.

ISBN: 9780936347509

Category: Poetry

Page: 186

View: 5473


A Millennium of Classical Persian Poetry is designed to introduce students of Pesian to the richness of the classical poetic legacy. The Persian metrical system and poetic forms are explained, and selections are given from the works of all major poets, from Rudaki in the tenth century to Bahar in the twentieth, with annotations of difficult grammatical constructions and unfamiliar allusions. Highlights include poetry by Firdawsi, Farrukhi, Anvari, Khaqani, Nizami, Attar, Rumi, Sa'di, Hafiz, Jami, Sa'ib, and a host of lesser-known poets. A full Persian-English vocabulary is included.

Bodies That Remember

Women's Indigenous Knowledge and Cosmopolitanism in South Asian Poetry

Author: Anita Anantharam

Publisher: Syracuse University Press

ISBN: 0815650590

Category: Poetry

Page: 252

View: 7042


An engaging and informative exploration of four women poets writing in Hindi and Urdu over the course of the twentieth century in India and Pakistan. Anantharam follows the authors and their works, as both countries undergo profound political and social transformations. The book tells of how these women forge solidarities with women from different, castes, classes, and religions through their poetry.

Politics of Piety

The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject

Author: Saba Mahmood

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691149801

Category: Religion

Page: 233

View: 3548


Politics of Piety is a groundbreaking analysis of Islamist cultural politics through the ethnography of a thriving, grassroots women's piety movement in the mosques of Cairo, Egypt. Unlike those organized Islamist activities that seek to seize or transform the state, this is a moral reform movement whose orthodox practices are commonly viewed as inconsequential to Egypt's political landscape. Saba Mahmood's compelling exposition of these practices challenges this assumption by showing how the ethical and the political are indelibly linked within the context of such movements. Not only is this book a sensitive ethnography of a critical but largely ignored dimension of the Islamic revival, it is also an unflinching critique of the secular-liberal assumptions by which some people hold such movements to account. The book addresses three central questions: How do movements of moral reform help us rethink the normative liberal account of politics? How does the adherence of women to the patriarchal norms at the core of such movements parochialize key assumptions within feminist theory about freedom, agency, authority, and the human subject? How does a consideration of debates about embodied religious rituals among Islamists and their secular critics help us understand the conceptual relationship between bodily form and political imaginaries? Politics of Piety is essential reading for anyone interested in issues at the nexus of ethics and politics, embodiment and gender, and liberalism and postcolonialism. In a substantial new preface, Mahmood addresses the controversy sparked by the original publication of her book and the scholarly discussions that have ensued.

Indo-Muslim Cultures in Transition

Author: Alka Patel,Karen Leonard

Publisher: BRILL

ISBN: 9004218874

Category: History

Page: 292

View: 8405


The authors in this volume analyze the rich layers of circulation and exchange of art, architecture, and literature within South Asia from the sixteenth through the twentieth centuries, focusing on the interaction of Muslims and Islamic traditions with other people and traditions there.

Institutionalizing sectarianism

law, religious culture, and the remaking of Shi'i Lebanon, 1920-1947

Author: Max David Weiss,Stanford University. Dept. of History

Publisher: N.A



Page: 820

View: 3616


This dissertation investigates the practice of sectarianism as well as the remaking of sectarian forms of identification among the Lebanese Shi`i community during the first half of the twentieth century. Shi`i religious scholars, the colonial state, new political leaderships as well as ordinary people clashed and collaborated in shaping a new political, cultural, and institutional landscape under the French Mandate---the conditions of possibility for new productions of Lebanese sectarianism. The institution of a new personal status legal regime, the expansion of Shi`i spheres of autonomy as well as the increased visibility of an ensemble of Shi`i religious practices illustrated the extent to which sectarianism as a lived experience in Lebanon was forged through an overlapping set of historical processes of institutionalization. Consequently, it becomes historically accurate and necessary to speak of Lebanese sectarianisms in the plural. Despite the continued marginalization of the Shi`a, the Mandate period was fraught with contradictory possibilities for the community, ranging from the promise of communal empowerment, on the one hand, and the growing danger of sectarian division, on the other. The pressing demands for what I call "sectarianization" that came from below dovetailed with analogous attempts on the part of the colonial state at "sectarianization" from above. By the time of independence, Lebanese Shi`i identity had been reconfigured in a new sectarian guise, was increasingly articulated in a sectarian idiom dependent on both institutional and discursive practices, and was dialectically related to certain forms of political sectarianism. The emergence and institutionalization of such cultural and juridical expressions of difference were directly influenced by and, in turn, have inflected the character of colonialism, nationalism, and sectarianism in twentieth century Lebanon.

Let's Study Urdu

An Introduction to the Script

Author: Ali Sultaan Asani,Syed Akbar Hyder

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300120605

Category: Foreign Language Study

Page: 89

View: 8596


An introduction to the Urdu language offers lessons on grammar, vocabulary, and the letters of the Urdu alphabet and how they are used in words and sentences.

'Speaking Truth to Power'

Religion, Caste, and the Subaltern Question in India

Author: Manu Belur Bhagavan,Eleanor Zelliot,Anne Feldhaus

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780195693058

Category: History

Page: 242

View: 4264


On the religious sentiments and intellectual life of Dalits of India; contributed articles honoring the memory of Eleanor Zelliot, b.1926.

Horse of Karbala

Muslim Devotional Life in India

Author: D. Pinault

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137047658

Category: Social Science

Page: 257

View: 7626


Horse of Karbala is a study of Muharram rituals and interfaith relations in three locations in India: Ladakh, Darjeeling, and Hyderabad. These rituals commemorate an event of vital importance to Shia Muslims: the seventh-century death of the Imam Husain, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, at the battlefield of Karbala in Iraq. Pinault examines three different forms of ritual commemoration of Husain's death - poetry-recital and self-flagellation in Hyderabad; stick-fighting in Darjeeling; and the 'Horse of Karbala' procession, in which a stallion representing the mount ridden in battle by Husain is made the center of a public parade in Ladakh and other Indian localities. The book looks at how publicly staged rituals serve to mediate communal relations: in Hyderabad and Darjeeling, between Muslim and Hindu populations; in Ladakh, between Muslims and Buddhists. Attention is also given to controversies within Muslim communities over issues related to Muharram such as the belief in intercession by the Karbala Martyrs on behalf of individual believers.

States Without Citizens

Understanding the Islamic Crisis

Author: John Walter Jandora

Publisher: Praeger Publishers

ISBN: 9780313355905

Category: History

Page: 112

View: 1759


The Islamic crisis will not abate until culturally authentic institutions are created within Islamic societies to instill an Islamic ethic of citizenship.

The Khōjā of Tanzania

Discontinuities of a Postcolonial Religious Identity

Author: Iqbal Akhtar

Publisher: Brill

ISBN: 9004292888

Category: Religion

Page: 244

View: 4207


The Khōjā of Tanzania, Discontinuities of a Postcolonial Religious Identity is a multidisciplinary diachronic study of the historical development of Khōjā religious identity in Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam over two centuries, from an Indic Hindu-Muslim caste (jñāti) to an Afro-Asian Muslim community (jamātī) towards a Near Eastern imaged Islamic nation (ummatī).