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Where is the “Muslim World”?

10 November 2013 No Comment Email This Post Email This Post

La_nascita_di_Venere_(Botticelli) 1Where is the “Muslim World”?

“I laugh when I hear that the fish in the water is thirsty” ~ Kabir

We devote a great deal of our resources to countering the shrill voices of the looniverse. It’s been more than a decade since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and the opportunists who seized upon the horrors of that day in 2001 have arguably reached their zenith and begun their inevitable decline.

Dominated by crude anti-Muslim bigots, commentary emanating from the so-called “counter jihadists” is often more like the braying of donkeys than the thoughtful analysis one might expect from self-styled “experts” claiming lofty credentials. Their caterwauling is mostly likely to appeal, over the long run, only to the fringe.

What is arguably more damaging is the insidious bigotry that permeates our thoughts and our language. It is not so much that we don’t question our bias, but that we don’t notice it at all. Like the water we drink and the air we breathe, we take certain assumptions for granted.

Today the “Clash of Civilizations” has come to dominate our discourse, though on some level, this is not a new narrative. The longstanding rivalry between “the West” and “the Muslim world” has a long and painful history–one of fear, mistrust, and misunderstanding.

In just under 11 minutes, UK Professor Tony McEnery puts 500 years of history and present-day media depictions of Muslims into perspective. Backed by an astute analysis of the UK media, he calls upon us to reconsider the mental and verbal construct of the so-called “Muslim world.” (H/T:Imam Abdullah Hassan)

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