Islamism and Social Reform in Kerala, South India

  title={Islamism and Social Reform in Kerala, South India},
  author={Filippo Osella and Caroline Osella},
  journal={Modern Asian Studies},
  pages={317 - 346}
Abstract This paper critiques ethnographic tendencies to idealise and celebrate sufi ‘traditionalism’ as authentically South Asian. We perceive strong academic trends of frank distaste for reformism, which is then inaccurately—and dangerously buttressing Hindutva rhetoric—branded as going against the grain of South Asian society. This often goes along with (inaccurate) branding of all reformism as ‘foreign inspired’ or wah'habi. Kerala's Mujahids (Kerala Naduvathul Mujahideen [KNM]) are clearly… Expand
Islamic Traditionalism in a Globalizing World: Sunni Muslim identity in Kerala, South India
Abstract In our ethnography among traditionalist Sunni Muslims of Kerala, South India, we observe the emergence of new intellectual critiques of Islamic reformism and a revival of ‘traditional’Expand
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Inspired as much by interfaith dialogue as by ethnographic discussions of intersubjectivity, I draw some narrow debates within Indian Islam outside of their usual South Asianist and/or Islam-centricExpand
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Beyond the Paradox: Religion, Family and Modernity in Contemporary Bangladesh
  • S. White
  • Sociology, Political Science
  • Modern Asian Studies
  • 2012
Abstract This paper reflects on the apparent ‘paradox’ of a contemporary Bangladesh that appears both ‘more modern’ and ‘more Islamic’, focusing on changes in the family (and the gender andExpand
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Contemporary ideas about religion and its role in Indian society are rooted in the county's pre-colonial history, the interpretations and actions of the colonial government, and the post-colonialExpand
The most striking feature of the Kerala Muslim landscape is its organizational vitality.  Clearly, the sheer plethora of Muslim organizations and the broad range of their activities, all traceable toExpand
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This thesis presents the results of 23 months of fieldwork conducted between 2010 and 2012 in Nampula City, northern Mozambique. It analyses the manifestation of Islamic reformism in the city’s urbanExpand
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According to the conventional wisdom, there is no separation between religion and the state in Islam. Ernest Gellner thus asserted that Islam ‘was the state from the very start’. Most readings ofExpand


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Abstract This article presents ethnographic material from contemporary Kerala, where recent shifts in Muslim women's dress styles (shift from sari towards salwaar kameez; adoption of pardah; use ofExpand
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Girls' education has been enduringly controversial in north India, and the disputes of the second half of the nineteenth century and early twentieth century still echo in debates about girls'Expand
Mullahs on the Mainframe: Islam and Modernity among the Daudi Bohras
The values of traditionalist Islam are often portrayed as inherently hostile to those of a modern, pluralistic society. This book shatters many of these stereotypes. Jonah Blank provides a first-handExpand
Once upon a time in the West? Stories of migration and modernity from Kerala, South India
This article explores how members of an ex-untouchable, ‘backward’ community of South India – the Izhavas of Kerala – represent and make sense of their entanglements within ‘modernity’. IzhavaExpand
Religious Education and the Rhetoric of Reform: The Madrasa in British India and Pakistan
The madrasa is one of the many institutions which have seen recurrent attempts at reform in Muslim societies during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Since the eleventh century, when it firstExpand
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In this rich account of a Muslim society in highland Sumatra, Indonesia, John Bowen describes how men and women debate among themselves ideas of what Islam is and should be--as it pertains to allExpand
Other-Worldly and This-Worldly Islam and the Islamic Revival
  • F. Robinson
  • Philosophy, History
  • Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society
  • 2004
In his Islam in Modern History, published in 1957, yet still a work remarkable for its insights, Wilfred Cantwell Smith refers to the extraordinary energy which had surged through the Muslim worldExpand
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A reasoned, objective examination of the role of madrasas. The emergence of radical Islamist movements in various parts of the world, the rise and fall of the Taliban in Afghanistan, the 9/11Expand
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This article discusses relationships between ritual change and out-migration in rural Kerala, south India, via ethnography of kuthiyottam, a sacrifice of human blood standing metonymically for fullExpand
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In the context of Sri Lanka's inter-ethnic conflict between the Tamils and the Sinhalese, the Tamil- speaking Muslims or Moors occupy a unique position. Unlike the historically insurrectionistExpand