Questioning the Authority of the Past: The Ahl al-Qur'an Movements in the Punjab

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9780195473483: Questioning the Authority of the Past: The Ahl al-Qur'an Movements in the Punjab

Unlike other studies on South Asian Islam, which either ignore the Ahl al-Quran or misread their dogmatic approach, and also the extent of its impact, the present study researches the Ahl al-Quran as disparate set of movements originating during the late nineteenth century, mainly in Punjab. To varying degrees, these movements and their ideologues-most notably Maulvi Abdullah Chakralavi, Khwaja Ahmad-ud-Din Amritsari and Ghulam Ahmad Parvez-espoused the centrality of Quran as the only divine text required for the inference of religious doctrines. They questioned the relevance and authority of such sources as hadith and classical works of exegesis and jurisprudential compendiums. Their motive was to engender a discursive space in which Islam could be projected as a religion compatible with modernity, tolerant of other religions and progressive-egalitarian in its spirit. This particular version of Islam, as part of the larger discourse on Islamic modernism, was instrumental in shaping the politics of Islam in Pakistan up to 1960s and continues to inform the religious worldview of a large number of Muslims touched by modern sensibilities.

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Ali Usman Qasmi is a Newton Fellow for postdoctoral research at the history department of Royal Holloway College, University of London. He recived his PhD in South Asian History at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, in 2009.

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this is an important contribution not only to towards a better understanding of the Ahl al-Qur'an nut also to the study of Islam in modern South Asia. Muhammad Qasim Zaman, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies

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Book Description Oxford University Press, Pakistan, 2011. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Ali Usman Qasmi’s work on the Ahl al-Qur’an constitutes a seminal study into the intellectual history of Islamic reform movements which breaks new ground for scholarship in the field both empirically and conceptually. Unlike other studies on South Asian Islam which either discount the Ahl al-Qur’an or misread their dogmatic approach, and also the extent of its impact, the present study researches the Ahl al-Qur’an as disparate set of movements originating during the late nineteenth century, mainly in Punjab. To varying degrees, these movements and their ideologues—most notably Maulwi ‘Abdullah Chakralawi, Khwaja Ahmad-ud-Din Amritsari and Ghulam Ahmad Parwez—espoused the centrality of the Holy Quran as the only divine text required for the inference of religious doctrines. They questioned the relevance and authority of such sources as Hadith literature and classical works of exegesis and jurisprudential compendiums. Their motive was to engender a discursive space in which Islam could be projected as a religion compatible with modernity; tolerant of other religions; and progressive-egalitarian in its spirit. This particular version of Islam, as part of the larger discourse on Islamic modernism, was instrumental in shaping the politics of Islam in Pakistan up to 1960s and continues to inform the religious worldview of a large number of Muslims touched by modern sensibilities. Bookseller Inventory # 509

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