An Attempt to Understand the Muslim Reaction to the "Satanic Verses" (Symposium S. No. 53)
By: Victoria La'Porte (author)Hardback
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This volume deals with all the major issues surrounding "The Satanic Verses" controversy. It explores Muslim reasons for wanting the novel banned and places their arguments in context with the history of the West and the Islamic world. It shows how Muslim hurt and anger toward the publication cannot be reduced solely to sociological and anthropological factors, but rather locates the reason for offence in the manner Rushdie chose in writing the novel. The book also seeks to illuminate how liberal reaction widened the gap between the author and the Muslim community in Britain. A large section of the book challenges the liberal arguments against censorship. It reveals the mistake liberals make in imposing their own belief system on the Muslim community. It explore the reaction from Christian circles, focusing explicitly on the Church of England. Finally, the study examines all the issues surrounding law. It shows how the fatwa imposed on Rushdie, issued by the late Ayatollah Khomeini, though religiously motivated, is contrary to the law and spirit of Islam and must be condemned. It provides a discussion of the blasphemy law in relation to "The Satanic Verses".
A sequence of events; a synopsis of the story; can a great work of literature be suppressed? An appreciation of the literary significance of "The Satanic Verses" - the novel as a postmodern icon, a sympathetic novel - migration and loss; major themes in the work of Salman Rushdie, the offending passages, critical non-Islamic passages; Rushdie - his intentions, his conversion and its implications; "The Satanic Verses" - a modern day orientalist writing?; historicity and the fictional nature of "The Satanic Verses"; the central role of the prophet Muhammad for Muslims; Jews, Christians and Muslims - disparate treatment?; secular fundamentalism; secular values challenged; should the British law of blasphemy be extended?; Khomeini's fatwa - against the spirit of Islam; from what criteria can one make value judgements?; the Christian responses to the controversy.
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- ID: 9780773480315
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