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The State of Islam: Culture and Cold War Politics in Pakistanby Sadia Toor
Synopses & Reviews
The State of Islam tells the story of the Pakistani nation-state through the lens of the Cold War, and more recently the War on Terror, in order to shed light on the domestic and international processes behind the rise of militant Islam across the world. Unlike existing scholarship on nationalism, Islam and the state in Pakistan, which tends to privilege events in a narrowly-defined political realm, The State of Islam is a Gramscian analysis of cultural politics in Pakistan from its origins to the contemporary period. The author uses the tools of cultural studies and postcolonial theory to understand what is at stake in discourses of Islam, socialism and the nation in Pakistan. Among other things, The State of Islam seeks to explain how Pakistan went from being a place where the strategic battle for hegemony was fought between two secular forces — the liberal nationalists and the Marxist cultural Left or Progressives — to one where the national discourse has become increasingly defined by the agenda of the religious right. Toor argues how this was directly tied to the Cold War context in which political Islam was advanced, along with the marginalization and active repression of the organized Left and attempts to marginalize its alternate visions of Pakistani society.
A contemporary history of Iran, focusing on the Islamic Revolution.
The State of Islam tells the story of Pakistan through the lens of the Cold War, and more recently the War on Terror, to shed light on the domestic and international processes behind the global rise of militant Islam.
Unlike existing scholarship on nationalism, Islam and the state in Pakistan, which tends to privilege events in a narrowly-defined ‘political realm, Saadia Toor highlights the significance of cultural politics in Pakistan from its origins to the contemporary period. This extra dimension allows Toor to explain how the struggle between Marxists and liberal nationalists was influenced and eventually engulfed by the agenda of the religious right.
Timely and unique, this book is a must for anyone who wants to understand the roots of modern Pakistan and the likely outcome of current power struggles in the country.
About the Author
Saadia Toor is originally from Pakistan and is currently Assistant Professor in Sociology, Social Anthropology and Social Work at CUNY.
Table of Contents
Chapter One / Introduction * Chapter Two: "That Seditious Place": East Bengal and the National Language Controversy * Chapter Three: 'Voh Manzil Abhi Nahin Aai': Progressive Writers Attempt to Rewrite the Nation * Chapter Four: "Revolution" in Pakistan: Ayub Khan's 'Decade of Development' and its Cultural Vicissitudes * Chapter Five: 'The Past was Another Country': Women, Islam and the Nation-State under Zia * Chapter Six / Epilogue: The Long Shadow of Zia
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History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology