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The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith Paperback – February 10, 2005
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I hear from a Saudi friend that his country's religious police arrest women for wearing red on Valentines Day, and I think, Since when does a merciful God outlaw joyor fun? I read about victims of rape being stoned for "adultery" and I wonder how a critical mass of us can stay stone silent.
She asks tough questions: "What's with the stubborn streak of anti-Semitism in Islam? Who is the real colonizer of the Muslims-America or Arabia? Why are we squandering the talents of women, fully half of God's creation?" This is not an anti-Muslim rant. Manji also speaks with passionate love and hope for Islam, believing that democracy is compatible with its purest doctrine. Sure, she's biased and opinionated. But all religions, from Christianity to Buddhism to Islam should be accountable for how their leadership and national allegiances personally affect their followers. One would hope that this honest voice be met with a little more self-scrutiny and a little less anti-personal, anti-feminine, and anti-Western rhetoric. --Gail Hudson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Thirty reviews are positive--3 to five stars--and 14 (nearly 50%) are by people who have reviewed for Amazon before. Only 7 (less than 25%) are anonymous, signed "A Reader"). In general, the reviewers discuss the merits of the <book>.
Twenty-two reviews are hostile--almost all only 1 star--and only 5 (about 23%) are by previous Amazon reviewers. (One claims a children's game caused repeated vomiting by her child; reviews a $2.79 screwdriver; and attacks a book she admits not having read. In short, she doesn't review--she rants.) Nine (about 40%) are anonymous. Many are merely ad hominem attacks on the author, who is described as dishonest, ignorant, money-hungry, publicity-seeking (even fatwa-seeking) and fostering a "craze for Islamophobia." One calls Manji "simply not a Muslim" because of her "inability to read Arabic, absence from active Mulim worship, embrace of the West and its secular values, not to mention her identity as a Lesbian feminist."
I believe Amazon's reader-reviews are important and should not be distorted by partisan attacks. Readers should be alert to possible unfairness in this case. Now (at last) to the book itself.
Manji addresses her fellow Muslims thus: "I have to be honest with you. Islam is on pretty thin ice with me. I'm hanging on by my fingernails . . . ." What sounds like a nifty, snappy, wise-ass opener is, it soon becomes clear, really an expression of pain.Read more ›
Many can question how Islam reached its current position, but despite its position as one of the world's fastest growing religion, Manji is correct that it faces a crisis. The largest funders of Islamic proselytizing and scholarship -- Persian gulf petrol dollars -- also represent the faiths most conservative elements. Not surprisingly, they often conflate ancient Arabian social custom with articles of Islamic faith causing substantial regression towards misogynist and anti-democratic principles. Here she offers ample evidence such as books donated by Saudi Arabian charities to Islamic primary schools, which contain blanket vitriolic attacks on America, the West, and Jews.
This analysis dovetails well with the question she raises about what effect the large number of repressive authoritarian governments in Islamic countries has on the faith. Here argument that changes in Islam will have to come from Western Muslims is interesting, though she does not do enough to ask how they can gain sufficient legitimacy to bring about such change.
Manji's most frightening observations and probably the most often attacked are her observations regarding the current Middle East crisis. In current charged times these are hot button issues, but her analysis adds a much needed element to the current debate.Read more ›
In the post-9/11 world, Islam has occupied center stage of our global lexicon. In the name of this religion, international networks of terrorism have been spawned to attack, kill, and terrify. And Islam, like any other faith, has its problems--the totalitarian intolerance of dissent being one of its ugliest thorns. Under such a foreboding environment, Canadian TV journalist Irshad Manji dares to speak out via an open letter to all Muslims in her compelling and riveting book, THE TROUBLE WITH ISLAM.
Granted, the author openly admits she is grappling with her faith; one day, she laments, she may leave Islam for good. Yet Manji has the courage and fortitude to shed light on the myriad of problems inflicting her faith: the oppression of women in the Arab and Muslim world; the unwavering intolerance of other religions in Arab and Muslim nations; the rampant anti-Semitism festering and infecting mosques around the world. The author presents a convincing case that Islam has been captured by zealots who espouse a malignant, narrow interpretation of the Koran: an interpretation that portrays Islam as an antiquated relic looking backward--instead of a peaceful vehicle for adaptation and change in an ever-changing world.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fascinating. Definitely worth reading--especially for women by a woman.Published 20 days ago by swimmer
This book is eye opening for anybody who wants to understand Islam and how Islam should reform itself thoroughly and urgently if it wants to provide peace and growth to its... Read morePublished 27 days ago by Antoine Faisandier
When I read a book I assume the writer is more knowledgeable than me. I assumption was wrong. If you want to reinforce your believes about Islam this book is for you but if your... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Dimbaka Singh
The book as written by the author is really respectful and readable, a difficult job given the task. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Eric S
It is clear from this read Manji has never read the Quran. This entire book is based on misleading conjectures and option. Silly lolPublished 4 months ago by New Guy
The author raises many excellent points about something that is long overdue - reformation of the religion based on modern and liberal values. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Clyde
Disappointing. Ms. Mani is much better as an interviewee and speaker than as an author.Published 8 months ago by James F. Woods