Magazine article Islamic Horizons


Magazine article Islamic Horizons


Article excerpt

Two Arabic Travel Books: Accounts of China and India and Mission to the Volga 2014. Pp. 320. HB. $35 by Abu Zayd al-Sirafi (Tim Mackintosh-Smith, translator) & Ahmad I bn Fadlan (James Montgomery, translator) New York University Press: Library of Arabic Literature, New York, New York

The volume offers two samples of Arabic travel writing from the same era but chronicling wildly divergent experiences.

Accounts of China and India is a compilation of Abu Zayd al-Sirafi's reports and anecdotes on the lands and peoples of the Indian Ocean, from the Somali headlands to China and Korea.

In Mission to the Volga, Ahmad Ibn Fadlan relates the trials and tribulations of an embassy of diplomats and missionaries sent by Caliph al-Muqtadir to deliver political and religious instruction to the recently converted King of the Bulghars.

These stories illuminate a world of diversity during the heyday of the Abbasid period.

Striving for Allah: Purification and Resistance among Fundamentalist Muslims in the Netherlands Fiore Geelhoed pp. 282. PB. $61 Eleven International Publishing, The Hague, The Netherlands

In this book drawn on her award-winning doctoral dissertation, Fiore Geelhoed finds that Dutch Muslim fundamentalists are not as "other" as is commonly assumed. She argues that Islamic fundamentalism among the Dutch and other Western Muslims is, to a large extent, a Western phenomenon, and hence a truly glocal phenomenon.

How To Be A Happy Muslim Insha' Allah: Rise Above Your Problems and Choose Inner Peace and Joy with Ideas from the Quran, Sunnah, Counseling and Health Fields Sheima Salam Sumer 2014. …

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