In what follows, my aim is to argue – the stronger version of the thesis of postsecularity, concomitant to any discussion of political theology[ii] – that there is no strict separation between religion/theology/church/mosque and politics/secular/state/nation by way of deliberating on the possibility of an immanent Islamic critique. This thesis of postsecularity does not assert that we have varying amounts of religion mixed in with different amounts of politics,[iii] for that still conceives religion and politics as two separate concepts. Rather, it asserts that the categories of “religion” and “politics,” supposedly marking two distinct and oppositionally defined concepts, are incoherent to begin with, and should be dispensed[iv] with altogether.[v]Read More
The revival of interest in political theology at the turn of the millennium began with Islam, then moved to Christianity. In the wake of September 11, 2001, it became clear that not all religion was fading away, nor was all religion confined to the private sphere. The evidence: radical Islam. But the obvious risk of Islamophobia that accompanied a focus on Islam as anomalously growing and anomalously public prompted some scholars to explore how Christianity itself was neither fading away nor thoroughly privatized. Instead of focusing on Islam as anomaly, political theology provided a framework for complicating the West’s story of itself, for probing the complex and continuing relations between religious and political ideas.Read More
Political Theology and Islamic Studies Symposium: A potential collaboration or a foregone conclusion?
In the coming weeks, the Political Theology blog will be hosting a symposium on Political Theology and Islamic Studies, bringing together reflections from a number of leading scholars at the intersection of these fields. The editors are very grateful to our Contributing Editor, M. Owais Khan, and to Abbas Barzeger, for their long labors in putting together and editing this symposium. This first post introduces the questions to be discussed and the contributors who will be participating.Read More