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How Long is Life? Neoliberalism and Islamic Piety

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)790-812
Number of pages23
JournalCRITICAL INQUIRY
Volume43
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2017

Documents

  • How Long Is Life_IQTIDAR_Publishedonline1June2017_GREEN VoR

    How_Long_Is_Life_IQTIDAR_Publishedonline1June2017_GREEN_VoR.pdf, 515 KB, application/pdf

    1/06/2018

    Final published version

    Other

    © 2017 by by The University of Chicago. Published in Critical Inquiry, v. 43, University of Chicago Press, 01/06/2017, and can be found at https://doi.org/10.1086/692379

King's Authors

Abstract

How are neoliberal ideas and sensibilities entrenched in vastly different political contexts? The paper explores the enmeshment of neoliberalism with existing ideas and practices in predominantly Muslim societies by focusing on the ideational constellations supported by the pietist, mass proselytizing group, Tablighi Jamaat (TJ), which is the largest organized grouping of Muslims in the world today, and often seen as a model of secularized piety. It presents a brief history of the Tablighi Jamaat to elaborate the context and content of the particular arrangements of ideas that undergird its practices, and discusses an aspect that elide easily with neoliberalism: a vision of personal piety that does not engage with the new mechanisms of power that emanate from the modern state, and which consequently facilitates a naturalization of economic and political inequality. However, a very different conception of time embedded in TJ thought and practice creates significant tensions with neoliberalism and places important limits on this symbiotic relationship.

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