Muslim Madrasas in Contemporary South Asia

  • Yoginder S. Sikand


South Asia is home to the largest number of Muslims in the world. The estimated 400 million Muslims in the region far outnumber their co-religionists in any other part of the world. Despite the numerical significance of the South Asian Muslims, however, research on Islam and Muslims in the contemporary world continues to suffer from an exaggerated bias in favour of the Arab world, with relatively little attention given to South Asia. Further, much of the extant literature on South Asian Muslims has focused on their political history and, to a lesser extent, on the variants of Islamic expression in the area, particularly in the form of local Sufi orders. On the other hand, not much attention has been paid to the forms and associated styles of Islamic education on the subcontinent. This is unfortunate given the important impact that South Asian Islamic scholars or ‘ulamā have had on Muslim communities elsewhere in the past, particularly in the past 200 years, and even in present times.


Muslim Community Government School Modern Education Islamic Education Islamic Tradition 
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© UNRISD 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yoginder S. Sikand

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