I do not have much to add to the debate surrounding the Islamic Cultural Center that will surely be built near Ground Zero. But I do have a strangely delayed reaction to the word “Islamism”, whose short and pernicious history deserves more attention than it has been given. The suffix “ism” in this case is clearly not intended as a compliment. If you consult any word list on Google, it becomes clear that Islamism is a label for any variety of Islamic thought or action that can be judged to be inappropriately politicized, with the exemplary case being political violence.Read the rest of Against Judaist-Christianism.
Arjun Appadurai is Goddard Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University. His many books included Fear of Small Numbers: An Essay on the Geography of Anger (Duke University Press, 2006) and Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization (University of Minnesota Press, 1996).
Posts by Arjun Appadurai:
I grew up in Bombay (now Mumbai) in the 1950s and early 1960s. I spoke Tamil with my mother, a combination of English and Tamil with my siblings and my father, and various brands of Gujarati, Marathi and Hindi with friends, domestic helpers, neighbors, bureaucrats and shopkeepers. [...]Read the rest of Is Mumbai’s resilience endlessly renewable?.
I regret that we are forced to catch the special aura of this election without a deep and serious space for the idea of magic, magic as it used to be.Read the rest of The magic ballot.
Last week as I listened, along with many other Americans and others around the world, to President Bush’s most recent effort to reassure us about the current economic meltdown I had a “Road to Damascus” moment. It happened as I heard Bush repeat the word “faith”. [...]Read the rest of Welcome to the faith-based economy.