Download PDF by John R. Bowen: A New Anthropology of Islam

By John R. Bowen

ISBN-10: 0521822823

ISBN-13: 9780521822824

During this robust yet available new examine John Bowen attracts on an entire variety of labor in social anthropology to offer Islam in ways in which emphasise its constitutive practices, from praying and studying to judging and political establishing. beginning on the middle of Islam - revelation and studying in Arabic lands - Bowen indicates how Muslims have tailored Islamic texts and traditions to principles and prerequisites within the societies during which they dwell. Returning to key case experiences in Indonesia, Africa, Pakistan and Western Europe to discover every one significant area of Islamic spiritual and social lifestyles, Bowen additionally considers the theoretical advances in social anthropology that experience pop out of the examine of Islam. a brand new Anthropology of Islam is vital interpreting for all these attracted to the research of Islam and for these following new advancements within the self-discipline of anthropology.

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In the terminology in use on Java, the An Nur school is considered as a traditional (salaf ) school, as distinguished from modern (khalaf ) 4 5 Compare the study of Catholic nuns by Rebecca Lester (2005). See the essays on madrasas in Hefner and Zaman (2007) and Noor, Sikand, and van Bruinessen (2008). 30 Learning alternatives. Traditional schools may also teach learning mystical practices, such as repetitive reciting of verses, as well as forms of Javanese martial arts. “Traditional” in the Javanese context means conserving older ways of learning scripture and shaping the body and self to religious ends.

Throughout the world of Muslim-majority societies, many boys and girls, and men and women, learn not only to recite the Qur’an but also to recite it melodically, using certain rules of pronunciation (tajwˆıd). Living far from the Arabic-speaking world, Indonesians enthusiastically enter local, national, and international contests (and do quite well), and they often raise the question: can we not use Indonesian melodies? The authoritative response has been to say no, because the Qur’an was revealed to Arabic speakers – and indeed, some Indonesian reciters will practice sounds from secular Arabic music in order to become habituated to Arabic singing styles (Gade 2004).

And yet hearing hadiths remained far more authoritative than merely reading them from a book. Richard Bulliet (1994: 19–20) relates that in the tenth-century city of Nishapur the compilation made by Bukhari was widely available. Nonetheless, fifteen students of hadith made the 200-mile journey from Nishapur to a village in order to hear a man read the text aloud. This man, al-Kushmaihani, was the last living man to have written his copy according to dictation from a teacher who had made his copy in a class taught by Bukhari himself.

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A New Anthropology of Islam by John R. Bowen

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