Religious Fundamentalism in Developing Countries

Religious Fundamentalism in Developing Countries

Religious Fundamentalism in Developing Countries

Religious Fundamentalism in Developing Countries

Synopsis

Using a variety of methodological approaches, this timely book offers a thorough examination of the impact and implications of religious fundamentalism in developing nations. The authors explore why and how adherence to fundamentalist principles affects the social, political, and religious development of such countries as Israel, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, and the Philippines. In addition, they challenge the idea that fundamentalism of this sort is based only on religious beliefs by asserting that it has supra-political motivations as well.

Excerpt

Mir Zohair Husain

Islam is the raison d'être of Pakistan. Consequently, all Pakistani leaders, both civil and military, have found it necessary to identify themselves, at least nominally, with Islamic concepts so as to further legitimize their stewardship, and to unify an otherwise diverse country. However, three prominent leaders in Pakistan's history engaged in the politics of Islam more than anyone else, namely Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, and Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq. This chapter focuses on their use of Islam in contributing to Islamic revivals that profoundly affected their political fortunes and the destiny of Pakistan for better or worse.

MUHAMMAD ALI JINNAH

Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1875-1949), known reverentially by his fellow countrymen as “Quaid-e-Azam” (Great Leader), was the chief architect and founding father of Pakistan. Though Westernized and secular in his orientation, he infused the Pakistan Movement—struggling for an independent Muslim homeland—with new life and vigor when he became its leader in the late 1930s. In less than a decade, Jinnah brought about an unprecedented Islamic resurgence in twentieth-century India and created the new nation of Pakistan. His miraculous achievement—that still endures and thrives—establishes his place among the great leaders of Islamic history.

Jinnah: The Elitist and Moderate Secular Indian Nationalist

A barrister with British secular legal training and Western political values, Jinnah began his political career in 1906 when he joined the All-India National Congress Party. He was hailed as “an ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity” in the anti-colonialist struggle. The famous Indian Hindu nationalist Gopal Krishna Gokhale (whom Jinnah greatly admired and emulated for his good character and

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