From Morocco to Pakistan: the Islamic Fault Line



In recent years, in countries as distant as Morocco and Pakistan, political forces taking their inspiration in Islam have come dramatically into the political spotlight. Their political and social platforms are as much appeals for a return to the Islam of the Koran and tradition as a model for restructuring society, rejecting with equal vehemence Western materialism and Marxism in its various guises. It is instructive to see how radically the Arab sociologist Hicham Sharabi has altered his views on the role of Islam. In 1963 he observed, In the contemporary Arab world, Islam has become outmoded. Islam as an organised institutional force capable of exerting a direct influence on society and the state is on the wane.In 1979 he was to write, Islamic conservatism is today the dominant ideological force in Arab society.2


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  1. 1.
    Hicham Sharabi, Modernization of the Arab World (New York: Van Nostrand, 1966)Google Scholar
  2. 4.
    See N. M. Ayubi, The Political Revival of Islam: The Case of Egypt, International Journal of Middle East Studies (January 1980): 481–489Google Scholar
  3. 5.
    See S. Ibrahim, “Anatomy of Egypt’s Militant Islamic Groups,” International Journal of Middle East Studies (January 1980): 423–453Google Scholar
  4. 17.
    Stanley F. Reed, Dateline Cairo: Shaken Pillar, Foreign Policy, no. 45 (Winter 1981/82)Google Scholar
  5. 18.
    Mark Heller, Begin’s False Autonomy, Foreign Policy, no. 37 (Winter 1979/80)Google Scholar
  6. 19.
    Shimon Peres, One’ Israeli’s Formula for the Middle East, International Herald, Tribune, December 23, 1981, p. 4.Google Scholar

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© Institut Français des Relations Internationales 1982

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