Tag: European

Freeze Framing Muslims

Hollywood and the Slideshow of Western Imagination

Ziauddin Sardar and Merryl Wyn Davies

Interventions Vol. 12(2) 239-250 2010

Abstract

Western images of Islam and Muslims have been frozen in history and are recycled with mundane regularity. These ‘freeze frames’ emerged at the beginning of Islam and have, over centuries, acquired certain key elements and descriptors. Association of Islam with promiscuity and licentiousness was common during eight and tenth centuries. The Crusades added war-like violence to the picture, and embedded Islam within the concept of evil. Two further elements, barbarism and despotism, were supplied by the humanist movement of the fourteenth … Read More

Touched by Wonder: Art and Religion in the 21st Century

From Touched edited by Paul Domela, Liverpool Biennial of Contemporary Art, Liverpool, 2011

Ziauddin Sardar

The ability to experience and appreciate wonder is a distinctive human trait. Both art and religion are informed, shaped by and answer to this inherently human faculty. Both are touched by wonder and help us access this essential characteristic of our nature. Therefore, religion and art are entwined as necessary, indeed, vital elements that must be represented, celebrated and active in the public space if we are to be fully human.

Implicit in religion and art is the capacity to stimulate our sense and feeling … Read More

Muslim Societies Must Discover a Contemporary Meaning of Islam

Ziauddin Sardar, an internationally renowned Muslim scholar and the author of Desperately Seeking Paradise: Journeys of a Sceptical Muslim, represents one of the most authoritative moderate voices in Islam. Here, in a major intervention on the controversy over the cartoons of Prophet Muhammed published in the European media, he explores both sides of the debate and calls for “reformulating” Islam in contemporary terms.

Q. Even those who understand Muslim sensitivities feel the Muslim reaction to the cartoons of Prophet Muhammed has been excessive and is likely to reinforce the perception of the community as intolerant and too prickly.

A. The … Read More

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