By Bernard Lewis

Bernard Lewis is well-known worldwide as one of many best experts on Islam. Hailed as "the world's prime Islamic scholar" (Wall road magazine ), as "a towering determine between specialists at the tradition and faith of the Muslim world" (Baltimore solar ), and as "the doyen of center japanese studies" (New York occasions ), Lewis is not anything lower than a countrywide treasure, a relied on voice that politicians, newshounds, historians, and most people have all became to for perception into the center East.

Now, Lewis has introduced jointly writings on faith and govt within the center East, so various than within the Western international. the gathering contains formerly unpublished writings, English originals of articles released earlier than basically in international languages, and an creation to the publication through Lewis.

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Sample text

Along with the European-style constitutions and parliaments, which survive even in revolutionary Islamic Iran, and the European pattern of nationally defined sovereign states, there is still a general acceptance of the underlying European ideologies, especially of the concept of political nationhood, both with its topside of liberal patriotism, and its underside of ethnic chauvinism. An example of the latter is racially and theologically expressed anti-Semitism, a comparatively recent import from Europe to the world of Islam, where it has had a considerable impact.

But their children will be native-born and will be, and feel themselves to be, Europeans. In Britain and France, they will be citizens as of right, and even in Germany, where the laws of nationality are somewhat different, it will not be possible, in the long run, to deny them the citizenship to which they will feel that they are entitled. The emergence of a population, many millions strong, of Muslims born and educated in Western Europe will have immense and unpredictable consequences for Europe, for Islam, and for the relations between them.

TRAVESTIES To most Americans, the declaration is a travesty, a gross distortion of the nature and purpose of the American presence in Arabia. They should also know that for many—perhaps most— Muslims, the declaration is an equally grotesque travesty of the nature of Islam and even of its doctrine of jihad. The Qur’a-n speaks of peace as well as of war. The hundreds of thousands of traditions and sayings attributed with varying reliability to the Prophet, interpreted in various ways by the ulema, offer a wide range of guidance.

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