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Global Muslims in the Age of Steam and Print

Global Muslims in the Age of Steam and Print

James L. Gelvin
Nile Green
Copyright Date: 2014
Edition: 1
Pages: 306
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  • Book Info
    Global Muslims in the Age of Steam and Print
    Book Description:

    The second half of the nineteenth century marks a watershed in human history. Railroads linked remote hinterlands with cities; overland and undersea cables connected distant continents. New and accessible print technologies made the wide dissemination of ideas possible; oceangoing steamers carried goods to faraway markets and enabled the greatest long-distance migrations in recorded history.In this volume, leading scholars of the Islamic world recount the enduring consequences these technological, economic, social, and cultural revolutions had on Muslim communities from North Africa to South Asia, the Indian Ocean, and China. Drawing on a multiplicity of approaches and genres, from commodity history to biography to social network theory, the essays inGlobal Muslims in the Age of Steam and Printoffer new and diverse perspectives on a transnational community in an era of global transformation.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-95722-0
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Illustrations
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-ix)
  5. MAPS
    (pp. x-xiv)
  6. Introduction: Global Muslims in the Age of Steam and Print
    (pp. 1-22)
    James L. Gelvin and Nile Green

    At the end of the twentieth century, the termglobalizationentered both the social science lexicon and the popular imagination. While it has become a commonplace to say that we live in an era of globalization, there is little agreement on the exact parameters and processes that define this era.¹ The fundamental assumption of this book is that, however defined, the current age of globalization did not begin with the fall of the Berlin Wall or the invention of the microchip. Rather, this era was made possible and in many ways was defined by earlier globalizing events, such as those...


    • 1 A Sufi Century? The Modern Spread of the Sufi Orders in Southeast Asia
      (pp. 25-39)
      Michael Laffan

      With the global spread of Western power and the ensuing decline of indigenous polities in monsoonal Asia throughout the nineteenth century, members of key transregional Sufi brotherhoods, known individually astariqa(from the Arabic word for “way” or “path”) and divided by specific techniques and genealogies, engaged in active competition across the Indian Ocean. They did so in the name of broader orthodoxy and their putative founders alike, whether as Shattaris, linked to the heritage of Siraj al-Din ʿAbdallah Shattar (d. 1406), who had been active in India, or as Naqshbandis, committed to the teachings of the earlier, Bukhara-born Bahaʿ...

    • 2 An Ottoman Pasha and the End of Empire: Sulayman al-Baruni and the Networks of Islamic Reform
      (pp. 40-58)
      Amal Ghazal

      In a photograph taken in 1913, Sulayman al-Baruni (1872/73–1940), a native of the Nafusa Mountains in what is now Libya, has donned an Ottoman army uniform and a fez and poses with an Ottoman officer.¹ His appearance and his career epitomized the cosmopolitan Muslim reformer at the beginning of the twentieth century. Educated in Tunisia, Egypt, and Algeria, elected to the Ottoman parliament in Istanbul, dispatched to Tripolitania to fight Italian invaders, and spending the end of his life in exile in Oman with intermittent visits to Baghdad, al-Baruni had a career resembling that of many of his contemporaries...

    • 3 “A Leading Muslim of Aden”: Personal Trajectories, Imperial Networks, and the Construction of Community in Colonial Aden
      (pp. 59-77)
      Scott S. Reese

      In a 1922 letter to the first assistant resident of Aden, the chief qadi of the settlement, Daʾud al-Battah, declared that Muhammad Yasin Khan, his friend and colleague on the city’s Waqf Committee, was a learned and “leading Mohammedan of Aden.”¹ A number of peculiarities surrounding this statement make it worthy of note. First, M. Y. Khan, while certainly learned, was not a member of the local ulama but a Bombay-trained lawyer and an active member of the Indian Civil Service. Second and even more intriguing, neither Khan nor al-Battah was from Aden. Al-Battah hailed from Zabid, a town in...

    • 4 Fin-de-Siècle Egypt: A Nexus for Mediterranean and Global Radical Networks
      (pp. 78-100)
      Ilham Khuri-Makdisi

      In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a number of radical leftist ideas began circulating among various segments of the populations of eastern Mediterranean cities, especially Cairo and Alexandria. These ideas, which may be described as selective adaptations of socialist and anarchist principles, included calls for social justice, workers’ rights, mass secular education, and a general challenge to the existing social and political order at home and abroad. Such causes were almost never tackled independently or in isolation from larger issues. Rather, they were usually combined with more reformist and seemingly less radical demands, such as the establishment of...


    • 5 Hajj in the Time of Cholera: Pilgrim Ships and Contagion from Southeast Asia to the Red Sea
      (pp. 103-120)
      Eric Tagliacozzo

      David Arnold has pointed out that disease was an important yardstick in how Europeans conceptualized the rest of the world during the past several hundred years.¹ This was particularly so as the industrial age wore on and definite links started to be established between sanitation and public health in the metropolitan capitals of the West.² Yet as Myron Echenberg has shown to such devastating effect in his recent bookPlague Ports, the industrialization of steam shipping, increased transoceanic travel, and global commerce went hand in hand to facilitate the spread of pathogens on a theretofore unparalleled scale.³ Technology enabled virulent...

    • 6 Trafficking in Evil? The Global Arms Trade and the Politics of Disorder
      (pp. 121-142)
      Robert Crews

      Between the 1850s and 1930s, the territory stretching from the Euphrates to the Indus formed the epicenter of a commodity revolution whose effects are still felt throughout the region. The technologies of printing, telegraphy, the steamship, the railroad, photography, and cartography facilitated the emergence of new ways of imagining time and space, unleashing global flows of goods, people, and ideas. Beginning in the 1860s, however, innovations in the manufacture of a single commodity—guns—played a disproportionate role in ushering in a new era of politics. Modern firearms served as both instruments of European colonial expansion and indigenous state-building programs....

      (pp. None)
    • 7 The Creation of Iranian Music in the Age of Steam and Print, circa 1880–1914
      (pp. 143-157)
      Ann E. Lucas

      In October 2009, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization inscribed the Iranian musical form known as theradifon its Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The concept of the radif encompasses a collection of around two to three hundred melodies that form the basis of improvised performance of what Iranians have consistently identified as their traditional music (musiqi-i sonati-i iraniormusiqi-i asili-i irani).¹ Contemporary Iranian musicians who use the radif claim that this collection of melodies is the ultimate result of music making that has been going on for hundreds if not thousands...

    • 8 The Globalization of Dried Fruit: Transformations in the Eastern Arabian Economy, 1860s–1920s
      (pp. 158-182)
      Matthew S. Hopper

      TheGlide, an American bark, sailed into Muscat’s harbor on September 15, 1862, to obtain a precious payload. The ship had left Salem, Massachusetts, six months earlier and stopped first at Zanzibar and Aden to load coffee, ivory, hides, gum copal, beeswax, and chili peppers. But its most valuable cargo was to be loaded at Muscat. TheGlidewas the property of John Bertram, Salem’s most successful merchant. It had been built the previous year specifically for the Indian Ocean trade, and this was its second voyage to Muscat. Charles Benson, the ship’s steward and the only African American member...


    • 9 Remembering Java’s Islamization: A View from Sri Lanka
      (pp. 185-203)
      Ronit Ricci

      Let us imagine a group of people sitting together and listening to a narrative being recounted aloud. They are assembled in a Sri Lankan home in Colombo’s Slave Island or Kandy’s Kampong Pensen during the final years of the nineteenth century. The reciter is reading from a Malay manuscript written in Arabic script, and the story he is telling his audience—titled “Hikayat Tuan Gusti”—relates the early Islamization of Java. Members of a minuscule Muslim-Malay minority living in Buddhist- and Sinhala-majority British-ruled Ceylon, those gathered around the manuscript epitomized the intertwined histories of colonized and colonizer across the Indian...

    • 10 From Zanzibar to Beirut: Sayyida Salme bint Said and the Tensions of Cosmopolitanism
      (pp. 204-226)
      Jeremy Prestholdt

      This chapter explores concepts of space and relation at the turn of the twentieth century. Specifically, I concentrate on globalism in Zanzibari public discourse and the cognitive maps of individual perception. I focus closely on the voluminous writings of the first Zanzibari, indeed the first Arab woman, to publish her memoirs: Emily Ruete, born Sayyida Salme bint Said, a daughter of the sultan of Zanzibar. Ruete’s autobiography,Memoiren einer arabischen Prinzessin(Memoirs of an Arabian princess; 1886), narrates a series of seeming contradictions. Ruete eloped with a German merchant and converted to Christianity, but she became a fierce defender of...

    • 11 The Return of Gog: Politics and Pan-Islamism in the Hajj Travelogue of ʿAbd al-Majid Daryabadi
      (pp. 227-248)
      Homayra Ziad

      In 1929, the North Indian Muslim modernist, pan-Islamist, litterateur, magazine publisher, and born-again believer ʿAbd al-Majid Daryabadi (1892–1977) set sail for Mecca. An Urdu travelogue of his pilgrimage, titledSafar-i Hijaz: Hajj wa Ziyarat ka Mufassal wa Mukammal Hidayat Namah(Journey to the Hijaz: A detailed and complete guide book for hajj and pilgrimage), appeared that same year in forty installments of his Urdu journalSach(Truth). The passage that opens this chapter may appear misplaced in the middle of a hajj narrative—what role does anti-imperialist commentary have in a deeply spiritual journey to the House of God...

    • 12 Taking ʿAbduh to China: Chinese-Egyptian Intellectual Contact in the Early Twentieth Century
      (pp. 249-268)
      Zvi Ben-Dor Benite

      In 1935 two rather unusual publications appeared, one in Cairo and the other in Shanghai. The first was an Arabic edition of theAnalectsof Confucius (551–479 b.c.e.), theLun Yu. Published in Cairo asKitab al-Hiwar li Kunfushiyus(Confucius’s book of dialogues), the ArabicAnalectsappeared at the end of a yearlong series of lectures and discussions about China, its society, and its religions held at Al-Azhar University, the leading Islamic educational institution in the world.¹ The book was published by the famous Salafiyya Press (Al-Matbaʿa al-Salafiyya), a publishing house that at the time gave voice to an...

  10. List of Contributors
    (pp. 269-272)
  11. INDEX
    (pp. 273-285)