Islam: The Straight Path eBook Ñ Islam: The Kindle -

Islam: The Straight Path This book merits four and a half stars, but I rounded down to four The book is excellent and filled with information and opposing theological strains within Islam However, I felt that sometimes Esposito tried to defend Islam from Western critique which I have no problem with in of itself but would later write about certain tenets in Islam that kind of disproved the points he was trying to make For instance, the question of why did the Arabian Muslims seek to expand never felt adequately a This book merits four and a half stars, but I rounded down to four The book is excellent and filled with information and opposing theological strains within Islam However, I felt that sometimes Esposito tried to defend Islam from Western critique which I have no problem with in of itself but would later write about certain tenets in Islam that kind of disproved the points he was trying to make For instance, the question of why did the Arabian Muslims seek to expand never felt adequately answered Esposito himself notes that researchers have not been able to agree on that matter And yet I feel like he expended so much energy on why the Arab invaders were not a bad force, etc, while describing their erosion of the Sasanid Empire and spread into Asia.Other than that grievance, this book was by far the best book offered in my theology class As noted previously, different theological viewpoints were given in a clear and succinct way This made essay writing on Islam easy and, frankly, fun This book is the only book in my course literature that I do not want to sell I feel like this book will be relevant as long as Islamophobia ie, overblown fear of Islamic terrorism and general European xenophobia exists Had to read this for my history of the Middle East and Islam course, very dry and not as well written as I would have hoped Leaves out a lot of important facts and includes many errors that are clearly cultural things and not Islam at all. If you want to begin researching and understanding Islam this is a great book to start with It s easy to understand and gives you the history of Islam as a religion, ideology, culture, and political system I would encourage everyone to read this so they can understand what Islam is and what it isn t Its important to understand the richness and beauty that surrounds the tradition of Islam and not just modern perception of radical movements. This does not seem like a very good introduction to Islam I am not sure of the importance of covering obscure sects from centuries ago and all of that The book is very dry, not much fun to read, and seems like an awful choice for a college survey course as it seems quite apologetic and does a very poor job of dealing with the current social issues and such within Islam Nor does it go over any of the issues involving Islam and the outside world Overall, I can t really recommend this. Very dry It s not really relevant to understanding Islam unless you re studying where the extremist groups first originated or you just want to know about the historical movements of the religion I though John Esposito could do much better than that Very dry It s not really relevant to understanding Islam unless you re studying where the extremist groups first originated or you just want to know about the historical movements of the religion I though John Esposito could do much better than that The writing is dry Informative, I admit, but very dry, and reading it felt like a drag It was frustrating at times, primarily for the following two reasons 1 His insistence on considering Judaism and Christianity as a homogeneous unit of Judeo Christianity He conflates the two, and acts as if Judaism has a similar status to Christianity in the western world He seems to believe it is protected in a similar way for example, he says that Jewish holidays are given the same type of respect a The writing is dry Informative, I admit, but very dry, and reading it felt like a drag It was frustrating at times, primarily for the following two reasons 1 His insistence on considering Judaism and Christianity as a homogeneous unit of Judeo Christianity He conflates the two, and acts as if Judaism has a similar status to Christianity in the western world He seems to believe it is protected in a similar way for example, he says that Jewish holidays are given the same type of respect and accommodations as Christian ones personally, I would love to know where This occurs throughout the book, and makes him appear quite ignorant of Judaism, especially when Jews, while being a tiny portion of the community, are the overwhelming majority of hate crime victims often committed by Muslims, actually.2 He allows for no real criticism of Islam, even of Wahhabists and Sayyed Qutb who s bile antisemitism is rather renowned Even the negatives seem to be twisted, or glossed over When the author mentions some issues, such as women s rights, he skirts them, tries to make excuses, or refuses to engage with the issues at hand He seems very keen to divert attention to comparative, yet historic issues, in western society As a side note to this, near the end of the book, in chapter six, he complains that normal Muslims are often unfairly stereotyped due to the crimes committed by extremists, and how people don t tie extremist Christianity to normal Christians, or acts of violence by Jews such as, in his example, of a Jew killing some Palestinians in the West Bank but this does happen It happens frequently The Catholic paedophile priests have tarred normal Catholics, and Jews, Zionist or otherwise, are often attacked for the crime of supporting Israel, or not aggressively denouncing the Israeli government s policies This is not Islamophobia , it happens to all groups Overall, the book is biased, and one sided, and while it can be considered a reasonable overview, its bias and inability to engage with genuine and pressing concerns many people have about Islam, it renders this book poorly concealed propaganda 297 Given the enormous amounts of ignorance or misinformation that surrounds the subject of Islam in contemporary rhetoric and communal debate, this book, already a few years old in its fourth edition, was a timely read for me The author, a world renowned scholar in the field, provides an accessible and balanced introduction to Islam.This book is no apology for the religion of Islam, nor is it an attack on that religion It is, thankfully, a text that is well researched, broad in scope, and not afr Given the enormous amounts of ignorance or misinformation that surrounds the subject of Islam in contemporary rhetoric and communal debate, this book, already a few years old in its fourth edition, was a timely read for me The author, a world renowned scholar in the field, provides an accessible and balanced introduction to Islam.This book is no apology for the religion of Islam, nor is it an attack on that religion It is, thankfully, a text that is well researched, broad in scope, and not afraid to point out the negatives in the history of religion or enumerate the areas that Islam the use of which term is problematic because it is too amorphous needs to consider and address going forward if it wishes to continue to be a positive presence in the contemporary world.I found this text illuminating, chilling, confronting in parts, but overall very beneficial to my understanding of the straight path of Islam, an understanding that I believe is necessary in the light of continuing negative fear mongering that passes for media coverage of any issue that touches on Islam.I would strongly recommend this book to anyone who truly wishes to understand a little better the reality of Islam in our contemporary world.From the back cover Now in a new edition, this exceptionally successful survey text introduces the faith, belief, and practice of Islam from its earliest origins up to its contemporary resurgence John L Esposito, an internationally renowned expert on Islam, traces the development of this dynamic faith and its impact on world history and politics Lucidly written and expansive in scope, Islam The Straight Path, Fourth Edition, provides keen insight into one of the world s least understood religions It is ideally suited for use in courses on Islam, comparative religions, and Middle Eastern history and culture People always ask me what a great intro to Islam book is, and this is it Esposito does a fantastic job, and it is the best I have seen of its kind in its 3rd edition even, I think It does have some flaws, but what book doesn t. In Islam, Esposito provides a succinct, up to date survey of the Islamic experience, an introduction to the faith, belief, and practice of Islam from its origins to its contemporary resurgence He traces the emergence and development of this dynamic faith and its impact on world history and politics He discusses the formation of Islamic belief and practice law, theology, philosophy, and mysticism , chronicling the struggle of Muslims to define and adhere to their Islamic way of life Equally important is the essential information Esposito provides on the contemporary world of Islam, from Muslim responses to the challenges of colonialism and modernization to the reassertion of Islam in politics and society This third edition has been updated throughout and is enhanced by new material that accurately reflects the true diversity of Muslim cultures


About the Author: John L. Esposito

He is a professor of International Affairs and Islamic Studies at Georgetown University He is also the director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal center for Muslim Christian understanding at Georgetown University.Esposito was raised a Roman Catholic in an Italian neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York City, and spent a decade in a Catholic monastery After taking his first degree he worked as a management consultant and high school teacher He then studied and received a masters in theology at St John s University He earned a PhD at Temple University, Pennsylvania in 1974, studying Islam and held post doc appointments at Harvard and Oxford He is well known as a promoter of strong ties between Muslims and Christians and has challenged the Vatican to make greater efforts to encourage such ties.A specialist in Islam, political Islam, and the impact of Islamic movements from North Africa to Southeast Asia, Dr Esposito serves as a consultant to the Department of State as well as multinational corporations, governments, universities, and the media worldwide In 2005, Professor Esposito won the American Academy of Religion s prestigious Martin E Marty Award for the Public Understanding of Religion This award honors a scholar who has been exemplary in promoting the public understanding of religion A prolific writer, Professor Esposito is the author of over 25 books, including What Everyone Needs to Know About Islam, The Islamic Threat Myth or Reality , and Unholy War Terror in the Name of Islam He is also the Editor in Chief of The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Modern Islamic World, The Oxford History of Islam, and The Oxford Dictionary of Islam.


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