Reza Aslan’s “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” and the Fundamentalist Christian-Taliban Response

The first time I heard of “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth,” by Reza Aslan, was when I heard people complaining about it on Twitter. Well, not really complaining about the book per se, but the author’s religion. I’ve previously read another book by this author and I remember it being prettyContinue reading “Reza Aslan’s “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” and the Fundamentalist Christian-Taliban Response”

Gender and Modernity in Soviet Central Asia

The politics of gender in the Muslim world often seem to center on a conflict between Islam and modernity, but in the case of Soviet Central Asia, the conflict was instead between a post-colonial power that was in the process of defining itself and simultaneously trying to incorporate the diverse populations of former imperial territories.[1]Continue reading “Gender and Modernity in Soviet Central Asia”

Response: Selim Deringil’s “The Well-Protected Domains: Ideology and the Legitimation of Power in the Ottoman Empire 1876-1909”

Selim Deringil’s book, The Well-Protected Domains: Ideology and the Legitimation of Power in the Ottoman Empire 1876-1909, is an attempt to find a more balanced and realistic interpretation of the reign of Abdulhamid II than that proposed by either the Turkish left, which demonizes the period, or that of the Turkish right, which places AbdulhamidContinue reading “Response: Selim Deringil’s “The Well-Protected Domains: Ideology and the Legitimation of Power in the Ottoman Empire 1876-1909””

The “Muslim” Halloween Costume

Somewhere around Sheepshead Bay, a guy and his friends got on.  The guy was wearing traditional Arab Muslim clothing.  Or at least, sort of.  He had the kufi (?, long shirt), brimless cap, cotton pants and the sandals, but he wasn’t wearing them quite right.  The cap was way too small for him and theContinue reading “The “Muslim” Halloween Costume”

Discovering What Halal Really Means

I recently came across an article about an ongoing problem in a town called Colne in the UK.  According to the article, the KFC there has switched to serving halal foods as part of a trial.  A KFC representative said this was done because there have been quite a few requests in the UK forContinue reading “Discovering What Halal Really Means”