2008 | 1 | 2 | 74 – 90
Article title


Title variants
Roots of militant Islam in the Near East
Languages of publication
The new generation of radical Muslims is equally pessimistic as far as the state of Islam and Muslim society is concerned. However, its pessimism has been combined with radical revolutionary activity, which dismisses secular state and social order that have existed for several centuries as barbaric and godless. At the same time, it refuses the left wing policy, which helps to spread secular state power. This, as they believe, undermines the Islamic society, which had somehow maintained its autonomy until 19th century; instead, it offers its own alternative. They reject modernity and modernist apologetic Islam and insist on the return of Islam into active politics. They also refuse imported political ideas and are thus similar in approach to the first generation of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1940s and 1950s. To them, Islam had never been democratic. All those who obey human laws are infidels and have to be fought against. They are also convinced that it is necesary to stand up against nationalists since these set the boundaries of territorial expression and prevent the expansion of radical Islam. The revival of Islam came as a result of general decadence in the Muslim countries. In the 1950s and 1960s, Islam was marginalised in the countries which had adhered to the principles of nationalism and socialism; political and economic collapse of these countries opened the door to the return of religion. Since 1970s, Islamic revival has taken on various forms. Common Muslims have revived Islamic rituals and social practices; intellectuals have turned away from an overtly European and Western way of thinking to Islamic roots. Islamic revival has also become a shelter for fundamentalists, who have sought Islamic revolution. Fundamentalists have refused to settle for the Islamisation of society; they have striven for an Islamic state. The new millitants have secretly planned to return all Muslims to a purer faith by introducing an Islamic law – Sharia.
  • Ústav orientalistiky SAV, Klemensova 19, 813 64 Bratislava, Slovak Republic,
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