This volume of Princeton Readings in Religions brings together the work of more than thirty scholars of Islam and Muslim societies in South Asia to create a rich anthology of primary texts that contributes to a new appreciation of the lived religious and cultural experiences of the world's largest population of Muslims. The thirty-four selections--translated from Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Bengali, Tamil, Gujarati, Hindavi, Dakhani, and other languages--highlight a wide variety of genres, many rarely found in standard accounts of Islamic practice, from oral narratives to elite guidance manuals, from devotional songs to secular judicial decisions arbitrating Islamic law, and from political posters to a discussion among college women affiliated with an "Islamist" organization. Drawn from premodern texts, modern pamphlets, government and organizational archives, new media, and contemporary fieldwork, the selections reflect the rich diversity of Islamic belief and practice in South Asia. Each reading is introduced with a brief contextual note from its scholar-translator, and Barbara Metcalf introduces the whole volume with a substantial historical overview.
"[Islam in South Asia in Practice] successfully achieves its place as both a challenge to the Orientalist models of scholarship of the past as well as makes accessible the arguments and primary sources to a larger audience. . . . [T]he overall quality and tone of the articles is one that . . . pushes the field in important and meaningful ways, but manages to do so in a manner that can play well in classrooms."--Ilyse Morgenstein Fuerst, Journal of Contemporary Asia
"[T]he concentration of information and insight provided here--from Islamic doctrine to the mechanics of religious practices, sacred texts and spiritual discipline--goes a long way towards capturing the multifaceted meaning of what it has meant to live one's life as a Muslim at different times and in different places in South Asia."--Sarah Ansari, Journal of Islamic Studies
"[G]iving access to a wide-range of texts, Islam in South Asia in Practice as an anthology is a rich source of the study of modern/pre-modern South Asian Islam--its religious practices, institutions, and worldview. Islam in South Asia in Practice can better serve as an introduction as well as guide and reference book, respectively, to a wide-ranging texts and practices and scholarly debates and discussions on South Asian Islam. In sum, given the extensive variety of topics and issues and broad selection of themes and concerns it covers is a must read for all those students and scholars who are interested in the history of Islam in South Asia in general and 'in practice' in particular."--Tauseef Ahamd Parray, Islam and Muslim Societies Journal
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