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Islamic Charities and Islamic Humanism in Troubled Times

Jonathan Benthall

Wednesday 12 October at 5.30pm

To mark the launch of his new book, there will be a discussion between the author, Jonathan Benthall, and Prof André Singer, the President of the Royal Anthropological Institute. 

This book is the fruit of twenty years’ reflection on Islamic charities, both practically and as a key to understand the crisis in contemporary Islam. On the one hand Islam is undervalued as a moral and political force whose admirable qualities are epitomised in its strong tradition of charitable giving. On the other hand, it suffers from a crisis of authority that cannot be blamed entirely on the history of colonialism and stigmatisation to which Muslims have undoubtedly been subjected – most recently, as a result of the “War on Terror”.

The book consists of seventeen previously published chapters, with a general introduction and new prefatory material for each chapter. Part one reviews the current situation of Islamic charities from many different viewpoints. Part two expands the coverage to explore the potential for a twenty-first century global “Islamic humanism” devised by Muslims. This means addressing contentious topics such as religious toleration.

The book is published by Manchester University Press and is available here.

The event is free, but tickets must be booked. To book tickets please go to http://bookbenthall.eventbrite.co.uk