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By: Reinhard Schulze

The Islamic world - those countries where Islam is the dominant or most important religion - encompasses territories as far apart as Morocco, Indonesia, Somalia and Bosnia, and includes an extraordinarily diverse range of societies and cultures. Charting the 20th-century history of these societies, this book examines both what they have in common and their equally profound differences. Political change provides the chronological framework for the book, but is seen throughout in the context of culture and society.

Opening with a survey of the impact of colonialism and its attendant modernism on the Islamic world, the author moves on to explore the rise of bourgeois nationalism in the 1920s and 1930s, the era of independence movements (1939-1958), the complex relationship between Islamic cultures and the "republican" political culture of the Third World (1956-1973), the reassertion of Islamic ideologies in the 1970s and 1980s, and the issues surrounding the relationship between Islamic culture and civil society that have dominated debate in the early 1990s.