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Islam and the Politics of Secularism


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Table of Contents

1. Islam, Politics and Secularization 2. Modernization, Religion and the Ottomans 3. The Caliphate Question: Historical and Discursive Context 4. Secularization in the Caliphal Center (1908-1916) 5. Colonization in the Caliphal Periphery (1914-1920) 6. Abolition of the Caliphate: Secular Reform, Religious Justification (1919-1924) 7. Islam and Modernity: Confrontation or Accommodation?

About the Author

Nurullah Ardic is an assistant professor of sociology at Istanbul Sehir University, Turkey. His research focuses on religion and politics in the Middle East, Ottoman-Turkish modernization, social theory, and globalization, using historical-comparative and discourse analysis methods.


Dealing with two contested issues-secularization and the caliphate-in modern Islamic history in his engaging and stimulating book, Nurullah Ardic argues that Islam was the single most important source of legitimation and the main force shaping political and cultural developments in the modernization process in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries within the Ottoman Empire and Turkish Republic.


It is a comprehensive and well-documented text, which sets high standards for future scholars working on secularism in the Middle Eastern and the significance of the caliphate in Islamic history. Needless to say, it is also a relevant book for understanding the complex relationship between religion and politics in modern Turkey and for contemporary debates on the caliphate in the Islamic world, including the one based on ISIL's claim. As such, the book will be of great interest to scholars in Middle Eastern studies, Ottoman studies, secularization and modernization studies, and the sociology of religion.

Cengiz Sisman PhD

Furman University Journal of International and Global Studies April 2015

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