Teaching Religion to Children in Contemporary Tatarstan: The Case of Islam

This article is devoted to the problem of children’s instruction on Islam in the Republic of Tatarstan. Research is based on fieldwork in several rural districts and six cities carried out in June and July 2017, as well as on the analysis of curricula, textbooks, and publications on religious educational reforms. The study shows that the main factor in how religion is taught in public schools is the multiethnic and multireligious composition of the population (54 and 44 percent of Tatar and Russian populations respectively).

The Perception of Islam in Russia: The Comparative Dimension

Whereas a political market has developed in Western Europe in which negative clichés about Islam and Muslims are in demand, in Russia this market has not appeared. There are two reasons for this: the “autochthonous” nature of Islam in Russia and the specific features of the current political system. Due to these two factors, public articulation of negative attitudes toward Islam and Muslims is hampered and par- ties with an openly Islamophobic agenda are unlikely to emerge. At the same time, Russia is experiencing tensions similar to those in Western European societies.

Islam and Partial Modernization: There Was No Liberation from Medieval Elements (Conversation with Irina Starodubrovskaya)

In his interview Taufik Ibrahim argues that the main problem for Muslims is that the traditional, medieval understanding of religion has not yet been overcome. This traditional understanding is connected with the loss of the initial creative impulse of early Islam, with the so‑called closure of the gate of ijtihad. Both the fundamentalists and the reformists typically reference the early Islamic period. But the question is, why do they do so?

What Is Happening in the Islamic World? An Attempt at a Conceptualization

This round table addressed the question of research methodologies for those trends now observable in the Islamic world, as well as conceptual approaches for understanding current developments there. Such frameworks as Islamic reformation, a neomodern age, and the search for a political Islamic identity were proposed. Participants did not agree about the relationship between Islamic fundamentalism and modernity. Some of them considered fundamentalism as potentially a modernist movement, and others saw it only as antimodernist and archaic.

The Ideology of Russian-Language Jihadism before ISIS: Treating the Soviet Past as the Origin of Post-Soviet Radicalism

This article is devoted to the origin and development of the propagandist ideology of Russian-language jihadism. It develops the idea that the jihadism in Russia should be considered not so much in the context of the Islamic issue or as a result of the influence of foreign countries, but rather as an example of post-Soviet radicalism, formed on a native ideological and intellectual base.

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