Jihad, with its many terrifying associations, is a term widely used today, though its meaning is poorly grasped. Few people understand the circumstances requiring a jihad, or 'holy' war, or how Islamic militants justify their violent actions within the framework of the religious tradition of Islam. How Islam, with more than one billion followers, interprets jihad and establishes its precepts has become a critical issue. In illuminating the broad spectrum of Islam's moral considerations of the just war, John Kelsay helps Muslims and non-Muslims alike make sense of the possibilities for future war and peace.
John Kelsay is Distinguished Research Professor and Richard L. Rubenstein Professor of Religion at Florida State University.
Introduction 1. Sources 2. Shari'a Reasoning 3. Politics, Ethics, and War in Premodern Islam 4. Armed Resistance and Islamic Tradition 5. Military Action and Political Authority 6. Muslim Argument and the War on Terror Notes Acknowledgments Index