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.
About the Author
Maryam Panah was born in Iran and is a fluent Farsi speaker. After reading Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford University, she completed her doctoral thesis at the London School of Economics. She works in the field of international development, has recently lived in the UK, Belgium and India and is currently based in Berlin.
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