Difference between revisions of "Islamism"

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Islamism (and the associated Islamist) are terms that are used very widely in contemporary discourse.  
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Islamism (and the associated [[Islamist]]) are terms that are used very widely in contemporary discourse.  
  
 
   
 
   
 
==History of usage==
 
==History of usage==
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The term Islamism historically referred to adherents of Islam.  It was a term used widely in English from as early as 1800, peaking in books published in English around 1860 and declining to residual use by the turn of the century.  Its occurrence only picked up, as the Google Ngram image shows, but this time in a mostly new sense, at the end of the 1980s.
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What caused the reinvention and reinterpretation of the term Islamism (and around the same time, the coining of a new term to go with it - Islamist)?
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Four years later Martin Kramer - both student and friend of Lewis - introduced the term '[[Political Islam]]':
 
Four years later Martin Kramer - both student and friend of Lewis - introduced the term '[[Political Islam]]':
 
:Terminology for the phenomena characterized as Political Islam varies among scholars. The first scholar to introduce the term Political Islam was [[Martin Kramer]] in 1980. Some scholars use the term Islamism for the same set of phenomena, or use the two terms interchangeably. Dekmejian 1980 was among the first to place the politicization of Islam in the context of the failures of secular governments, although he uses the terms Islamism and fundamentalism (rather than Political Islam) interchangeably. Dekmejian 1995, still using fundamentalism and Islamism, is an influential treatment of Political Islam as increasingly mainstream and moderate. Some scholars, using descriptive terms such as conservative, progressive, militant, radical, or jihadist, distinguish among ideological strains of Political Islam.<ref>John O. Voll, Tamara Sonn [https://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/view/document/obo-9780195390155/obo-9780195390155-0063.xml Political Islam] ''Oxford Bibliographies'', LAST REVIEWED: 29 SEPTEMBER 2014, LAST MODIFIED: 14 DECEMBER 2009 DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780195390155-0063.</ref>
 
:Terminology for the phenomena characterized as Political Islam varies among scholars. The first scholar to introduce the term Political Islam was [[Martin Kramer]] in 1980. Some scholars use the term Islamism for the same set of phenomena, or use the two terms interchangeably. Dekmejian 1980 was among the first to place the politicization of Islam in the context of the failures of secular governments, although he uses the terms Islamism and fundamentalism (rather than Political Islam) interchangeably. Dekmejian 1995, still using fundamentalism and Islamism, is an influential treatment of Political Islam as increasingly mainstream and moderate. Some scholars, using descriptive terms such as conservative, progressive, militant, radical, or jihadist, distinguish among ideological strains of Political Islam.<ref>John O. Voll, Tamara Sonn [https://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/view/document/obo-9780195390155/obo-9780195390155-0063.xml Political Islam] ''Oxford Bibliographies'', LAST REVIEWED: 29 SEPTEMBER 2014, LAST MODIFIED: 14 DECEMBER 2009 DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780195390155-0063.</ref>
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Kramer's book was published by Sage but in a series called the 'Washington Papers'.  This was edited by [[Walter Laqueur]] the historian, journalist, propagandist and 'terror expert' who was at the time attached to the [[Georgetown University]] think tank the [[Center for Strategic and International Studies]]. The book only used the term 'Islamism' on four occasions, in each case with the prefix 'Pan' as in '[[Pan-Islamism]]'. the idea that Muslims involved in politics might all be part of the same phenomenon seems to have been an intoxicating one.
  
 
==Resources==
 
==Resources==

Revision as of 16:03, 13 February 2020

Islamism (and the associated Islamist) are terms that are used very widely in contemporary discourse.


History of usage

The term Islamism historically referred to adherents of Islam. It was a term used widely in English from as early as 1800, peaking in books published in English around 1860 and declining to residual use by the turn of the century. Its occurrence only picked up, as the Google Ngram image shows, but this time in a mostly new sense, at the end of the 1980s.

What caused the reinvention and reinterpretation of the term Islamism (and around the same time, the coining of a new term to go with it - Islamist)?


Four years later Martin Kramer - both student and friend of Lewis - introduced the term 'Political Islam':

Terminology for the phenomena characterized as Political Islam varies among scholars. The first scholar to introduce the term Political Islam was Martin Kramer in 1980. Some scholars use the term Islamism for the same set of phenomena, or use the two terms interchangeably. Dekmejian 1980 was among the first to place the politicization of Islam in the context of the failures of secular governments, although he uses the terms Islamism and fundamentalism (rather than Political Islam) interchangeably. Dekmejian 1995, still using fundamentalism and Islamism, is an influential treatment of Political Islam as increasingly mainstream and moderate. Some scholars, using descriptive terms such as conservative, progressive, militant, radical, or jihadist, distinguish among ideological strains of Political Islam.[1]

Kramer's book was published by Sage but in a series called the 'Washington Papers'. This was edited by Walter Laqueur the historian, journalist, propagandist and 'terror expert' who was at the time attached to the Georgetown University think tank the Center for Strategic and International Studies. The book only used the term 'Islamism' on four occasions, in each case with the prefix 'Pan' as in 'Pan-Islamism'. the idea that Muslims involved in politics might all be part of the same phenomenon seems to have been an intoxicating one.

Resources

Notes

  1. John O. Voll, Tamara Sonn Political Islam Oxford Bibliographies, LAST REVIEWED: 29 SEPTEMBER 2014, LAST MODIFIED: 14 DECEMBER 2009 DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780195390155-0063.