The population of Mali is mostly composed of Muslims. Thus, very popular Islam is a refuge, a bulwark of social disparities, and the injustice that is normal- ly the responsibility of the public authorities. The events of March 22, 2012 caused the fall of President Amadou Toumani Toure. They were also revealing of the deficiencies of the political class of Mali, which pushed people to appeal to religious leaders. The political class very discredited because of his attitude to- wards the people and the latter finally turned to religious leaders (Muslims) then considered as the true opinion leaders. Politicians are seen by the people as in- competent and corrupt officials. Some religious leaders including Imam Maha- moud Dicko and Cherif Ousmane Madani Haidara have combined political and religious discourse to win the trust of the people. This people (illiterate majority) ignore issues related to international political contexts that have a serious impact on national politics. As an illustration on April 5, 2019 Imam Dicko with ex- traordinary mobilization capacity organized a protest march to demand the res- ignation of Prime Minister Boubeye Maiga. A remarkable crowd gathered in the streets of Bamako brandishing slogans hostile to the institutions of the republic and partners committed to the stabilization of the country. This so-called peaceful march has greatly worried the Malian authorities. Following this popu- lar demonstration, the former will resign the government he led. This situation sufficiently proves the weight of religion in a political environment. The funda- mental reason for the rise of political Islam in Mali is due to the behavior of pol- iticians have taken control of institutions to enrich themselves illegally that is why they suffer from legitimacy. The bearers of the public authorities in Mali are the epitome of bad governance, corruption of favoritism...
One does not have to travel away from the main metropolitan areas in Mali to get a sense of such juxtapositions. Although anthropologists have recently drawn on fieldwork in far-flung places and among seemingly mar- ginal groups to emphasize their ‘modernity’ and long involvement in global- ized worlds, 11 I prefer to focus on Bamako, the colonial city that became the capital of postcolonial Mali. The most populous city in Mali, Bamako is also the country’s most important centre of economic activity, politics, education, cultural activity and international assistance, since Mali, on the French model, remains a highly centralized state. Readily available for sale at the back of the large imposing modern main Friday mosque located in the heart of central Bamako in a congested part of the city are ingredients for what was called ‘fetishism’ in the colonial lexicon, and, now usually, ‘traditional’ African religion or ‘medicine’. Such objects as dried and cured animal parts (horns, skulls, hands and quills of bush animals) are being bought and sold alongside copper vessels used in writing ‘magical’ and therapeutic texts and a wide array of plant medicines, some of which are now being marketed like Western pharmaceuticals. While it is usually very difficult for many scholars working in Muslim West Africa not to hone in on the exotic, my description of what might seem the contents of a curios- ity cabinet has a purpose other than the narrowly exoticizing. All of these ‘traditional’ objects are for sale in a space more or less separate from where other vendors sell more unambiguously Muslim objects, indeed, ‘modern’ Islamic religious commodities — copies of the Quran, prayer beads, print media about Islam and copies of the country’s most popular Muslim preachers’ sermons on cassette. 12
At first glance, we are familiar with the figure of this circle drawn and celebrated throughout political philosophy, from the Ancient Greeks through to the present. It is in the contemplation of this form that we find the expression of freedom, of the famous autonomy constantly sought, forever questioned: if we travel the full circle there is no order received F right-hand semi-circle in the diagram F that is not also produced by those who receive it F left-hand semi-circle. I am free when in some way or the other F we shall see how F I occupy both the top and the bottom of the diagram. Politics is tautological, not only in the above sense of signifying a stream of platitudes, but also because it does always say the same thing again and again, without any hesitation at being boring. It has to be repetitive. From the classical point of view I am auto-nomous (as opposed to hetero-nomous) when the law (nomos) is both what I produce through the expression of my will and what I conform to through the manifestation of my docility. As soon as this coincidence is broken, I leave the state of freedom and enter into that of dissidence, revolt, dissatisfaction or domination. The most exhilarating emancipation and the most abject dependence are not opposites; they qualify the movement, the path along this figure, depending on whether the circle is closed or not. (There is no need to specify that in no way does this circular form depend on the presence or absence of the very particular apparatus of election; we can find a thousand cases of elections without political talk and, conversely, a thousand cases in which a full circle is drawn without any vote whatsoever.) (Abele`s, 1990)
Consider John, who believes that he is a skillful poker player (p), and distinguish two sorts of stakes. Whether or not he is a skillful poker player, whether or not p is true, may matter to him a little or a lot. Something, large or small, is at stake on the truth of p. He may take opportunities to enter high-stakes or low-stakes games, for example. This is the sort of stake that Ramsey has in mind: the payoff of a bet on p depends on p’s truth or falsehood, and such bets may be high-stake or low-stake. A second sort of stake may also be at hand: John’s believing that p may itself carry consequences that matter to him, and so may the absence of that belief. Confidence in his ability may contribute to his success, while self-doubt may undermine it. Or self-confidence, overconfidence may contribute to losses; the same point applies. The consequences ground significant pragmatic reasons for holding the belief, or not; what’s at stake on having the belief may influence what one believes. It is a familiar and well-explored idea that belief may be held or withheld for pragmatic reasons. 3 How that may be accomplished and how pragmatic norms may govern believing is debatable, but it is not my present concern. I am
various agencies, and the contexts in which family therapy was applied. In an interesting analysis, Elberfeld notes that the very notion of what meaning ill meant changed. Rather than distinguishing between healthy and pathological family structures, the question was which family was functional and which was dysfunctional, and hence required therapy. In the discourse about family therapy, a certain norm about family life and communication within the family was established that therapy would produce. Ultimately, Elberfeld provides an informative discourse analysis that shows how different therapeutic discourses merged. What is, however, missing is a sense of what happened in therapy sessions. This is true for most of the chapters in the book. They provide interesting accounts of the guidance advise literature offered, for example how one might deal with stress, or how yoga should be performed in the context of New Age movements; but how this literature had an impact, how people made use of this literature, remains unclear. Nevertheless, the volume offers rich
However, both differ in their methodological approaches to reading Agamben. Broadly speaking, Jess Whyte provides an overtly political reading of Agamben’s thought, whereas Mathew Abbott’s is overtly ontological. Despite this point, these volumes do complement one another and both authors open up crucial points of inquiry. Whyte’s focus is Agamben’s contention that our time is making possible a new politics that can free human life from sovereign power (Whyte, 2013: 3). Focusing her criticism on Agamben’s own ‘accelerationist’ tendencies (Whyte, 2013: 3), Whyte draws on familiar tropes in Agamben’s thought - the camp, his writings on Auschwitz and the Muselmann, the state of exception, biopolitics, and the influence of both messianism and Martin Heidegger, whilst reading him as heavily influenced by the Marxist tradition. Contrarily, drawing on Ludwig Wittgenstein and Heidegger, as well as Friedrich Nietzsche, Emmanuel Levinas and Walter Benjamin, Abbott focuses upon the ontological dimension of Agamben’s thought. It is almost as if Whyte’s noting that the redemptive qualities of Agamben’s thought often appear elusive within his writings because of his claim that ontology is directly political have operated as the starting point for Abbott’s analyses (Whyte, 2013: 32). Whilst Abbott does draw upon Marxism to illustrate the inextricability of theory and practice, Agamben’s work for Abbott turns on the attempt to think the question of being. In an aim to clarify this positive ‘political ontology’, Abbott reads Agamben’s ‘coming politics’ as requiring us to rethink our relation to the question raised by being (Abbott, 2014: 1). Abbott defines political ontology as the study of how our conception of the world as such conditions what we take to be the ontic possibilities for human collectives (Abbott, 2014: 13). In short, Abbott attempts to do for Heidegger what Marx did for Hegel: stand him on his feet (Abbott, 2014: 9).
Peter Porter reminded us earlier that the question of what belongs to history and what belongs to the poem is misleading, and Adorno’s position reserves a place within the experience of lyric where the reductive historical approach cannot intrude: this is the mark of art’s singularity. His move is to claim this place as evidence of art’s resistance to “social pressure”. Where Adorno sees a representative spontaneity – an expression of opposition in lyric that, ipso facto, must be general – we can divine another way of involving the activity of reading lyric poetry in a context that exceeds the aesthetic. The spontaneity that excites Adorno is activated in speaking the lyric, and by configuring the lyric as being spoken to us. Here Adorno’s critique and Arendt’s authentic politics coincide. Whether the poem is monodic or choral, the colloquy installed has symbolic value as an emblem of the speaking, which amounts to what MacNeice called in 1938 “a tiny measure of contribution” in Modern Poetry; a gesture of communication - sometimes compromised - between poem and reader. From this basis, the life of each lyric and their respective political natures can be better conveyed.
The participation of women and women’s movements in political processes is instrumental in fostering democratization and gender sensitive modes of governance. Furthermore, as Kazi notes, gender equality and social justice must constitute one of the core pillars of democratic governance. If democratic governance is to be compatible with and advance women’s rights, it should not only embody a greater presence of women in formal politics, but more fundamentally, it should acknowledge, be sensitive of and responsive to the social and economic disparities between men and women. Moving forward, future research on the field of democratic governance and women’s rights, including this IDRC initiative, should look towards achieving “gender-just governance,” premised on the demand for gender equality, an agenda of transformative change, and the active engagement of women, feminists, and social movements, in order to effect changes within institutions and processes of governance at local, national, and international levels.
Anti-immigrant sentiment is common in many countries facing the difficulties of integrating culturally diverse populations. However, in European countries, this can degenerate into what can be termed more accurately ‘Islamophobia.’. Because immigration introduces such a large proportion of Muslims into Europe, the anti-immigrant rhetoric of extreme right-wing parties has become markedly anti-Muslim. The French National Front has adopted an electoral strategy that associates Islam with terrorism. Jean-Marie Le Pen described the potential radicalisation of Muslim immigrants in terms that implicated him for inciting hatred, 8 but his party still came in second in the 2002 French election. Germany’s Deputy Interior Minister August Hanning only worsened this fear by telling citizens that the government believes there are roughly 700 German citizens involved in Islamic extremist movements. 9 Since then, the term leitkultur, which refers to a European cultural sphere and had been taboo for many years, returned to the vernacular and can now be employed approvingly by members of the centre-right. Even in Italy, the Lega Nord has adopted anti-Muslim rhetoric, deploying slightly modified versions of traditional anti-Semitic devices as weapons against Islam. In the UK, Tony Blair’s government criminalised condoning terrorism in speeches both at home and abroad. 10 Both Muslims and non-Muslims alike fear that the label ‘terrorist’ is being used to criminalise what they consider resistance or liberation movements. The definition of terrorism is, after all, highly controversial, and results from political decisions more than from objective facts concerning movements or groups. In many European countries, it has become acceptable to associate Muslim immigration and the potential for terrorism.
Hassan and Barlas look specifically at women and rights in Islam. In “Women’s Readings of the Quran,” Barlas argues that Islam considers women to be equal to men. 18 In its early days, Barlas writes, Islam provided women with rights and privileges equal to that of men. Over the years, however, this Islam has changed from a religion of equality to one that was misogynistic. And Muslim women were unable to combat the unjust treatment put upon them in the name of Islam because they did not have access to the tools necessary for critical analysis. 19 Likewise, Hassan looks to the creation story of Adam and Eve to argue that there is no solid proof that one was created before the other, or that Eve was—as is accepted in the Judeo-Christian belief—solely responsible for “the Fall.” 20 She further argues that because men and women were created equal by Allah, they cannot, in any way, become unequal over time. 21 She notes a discrepancy between “Islamic ideals and Muslim practice.” 22 Hence, those laws that were enacted under the cloak of “Islamization” in Muslim countries reinforced this supposed inequality and led to misogyny, are now being critically viewed by Muslim women as tools of oppression. Looking specifically at Pakistan, Hassan states that during the time of Pakistan’s
Any field of study, including that of surveillance, is obliged to review from time-to-time the main force- fields that shape the object of analysis. Today the internet is bound up with surveillance at many levels and thus deserves special attention. This section argues that the research direction for Surveillance Studies should be strongly inflected by issues of information and the internet. The kinds of surveillance that have developed over several decades are heavily dependent on the digital—and, increasingly, on what is now labelled Big Data—but also extend beyond it. As Greenwald indicates, the Snowden revelations raise as a key issue the future of the internet. While it is true that modern societies have been ‘information societies’—and thus ‘surveillance societies’—from their inception (Lyon 2005), today information and its central conduits have become an unprecedented arena of political struggle, centred on surveillance. This suggests that both analytically, in terms of research directions, and politically, in terms of practice and policy, the internet and surveillance are bound in a mutually-informing relation.
1) Can we understand the ‘problem’ posed by veiling practices in Euro- pean liberal democracies as one emerging because of the secular char- acter of the state, built upon a separation of state and church, a divide of public/secular and private/religious domains? Often in the media the contentions are represented in such a framework, and the Levy sis- ters were banned from school on the basis of a 1989 Conseil d’État rul- ing that their headscarves constituted religious insignia that was ‘os- tentatious’ and ‘proselytizing’, and thus disruptive of the public/secu- lar and private/religious divide. Fernando historicized the l a ï c i t é p r i n c i- ple concerning the religious neutrality of the French state, arguing that the 1905 law, the basis for l a ï c i t é , followed a series of compromises be- tween the French state and the Catholic Church. As most Muslim im- migrants arrived in France after 1905, they were excluded from the kind of state concessions given to the Catholic Church. Fernando’s de- scription of the imbricated relationship between the ‘secular’ state and ‘religion’ is certainly not unique to France. Mahmood pointed out that Muslims are repeatedly singled out in liberal discourse for not respect- ing the separation of public/secular and private/religious domains, al- though the very articulation of public and private is built on history and relationships of power in Western liberal democracies, and in gen- eral remains porous to this day. Thus, in order to rethink the debate on the veil, why it emerges as a ‘problem’ at all, it is necessary to histori- cally and critically understand this framing of state and society as well. 2) What are the gendered dimensions of this debate that challenge both feminist and liberal ideologies? All presenters emphasized that it has gone largely unremarked in the debates that legal rulings restrict- ing veiling practices specifically harm women, for they then get exclud- ed from education and employment. The veil has become so en- trenched as a sign of Muslim women’s oppression and subjugation to patriarchy that the very European feminists who have over the last decades critiqued the objectification of women’s bodies for national symbolism and capitalist consumption, fail to question this view of the veil. It is after all no coincidence that it is women’s bodies that have be-
Rumours of the ‘church elder’ and his human burial (true or false), transformed into gossip and soon after became a political issue. The manipulative rumour seems to have worked as the ‘Guber’ not only lost at the polls; he was also labeled ‘fetish’. The political implication here is that, like the Speaker, the ‘Guber’ too had gone rather very quiet but for a different reason. In an unsophisticated traditional environment like the one in context, the people take serious exception to what they consider to be untraditional or cultural taboos. Untraditional or cultural taboos such as, not just giving an animal human identity but a known and localized prominent name with the prefix ‘elder’, ordinarily, amounts to committing political suicide for an aspirant to political office. Although, viewed also from the angle of a polity chocked with allegations of vote-rigging and all, the ‘Guber’ could equally argue that he did not lose at the polls to intentional rumour but was simply ‘rigged’ out.
From a social perspective, many citizens but also governments from the periphery countries of the eurozone, which suffered most from the crisis, blame austerity and Germany’s role in it to be counterproductive and forcing them into poverty by reducing the social welfare sector and causing raising unemployment. The Time states that “Germany has declared war on the eurozone” (The Times, November 23, 2011). The Spanish journalist Javier Cercas warned that the economical conditions, which Merkel forces upon his land, are unrealizable and evoke sentiments of anger and humiliation. (FAZ, July 2, 2012) As Thomson Reuters stated in the cbc News from the 30 th June 2015, the “Greek economy has shrunk by more than 25 per cent since 2009 and unemployment has soared to over 25 per cent” and “the Tsipras government blames German-driven austerity for this economic disaster” (Reuters 2015). But it is not only relevant from a social perspective. From the beginning of the crisis, there is an on-going discussion among economists about the best way out of the crisis, which did not yet stop as one can see on the current case of Greece. Not a single day passes without at least a little notice about it appearing in the newspapers. It is evident that no one did find the best solution yet or at least, scientists and influencing policy makers did not come to an agreement about the best plan for the eurozone, otherwise Greece might be already out of the crisis. The purpose of this thesis is not to find the solution for the crisis, but to understand what impact Germany really had on austerity. Whether it can be blamed or blessed for its behavior can only be estimated by further analyses and some timely distance to the current policy making and economic stage of the eurozone. Methodology
Mohammed Malley presents “Jordan: A Case Study of the Relationship between Islamic Finance and Islamist Politics”. In his opinion, Islamic banks may prove to be intermediaries between the government and Islamic activists. He sees a pivotal role for the country’s two Islamic banks only if an environment of real political liberalization is provided that seems to be unlikely in the near future. Filiz Baskan studies “The Political Economy of Islamic Finance in Turkey: The Role of Fethullah Gulen and Asya Finance”. But first he examines the role of Islam in Turkish politics and tries to show that ‘Islamic opposition has never been considered as legitimate by the state authorities’. ‘Parallel to the suppression of political Islam, the Turkish state has repressed Islamic businesses, albeit not systematically’ (p. 217). According to the author, ‘the Islamic sects gained a significant place in the economic field by using the facilities of a market oriented economic model, which was initiated by in January 1980 with the help of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund’ (p.218). Islamic banks in Turkey are called Special Finance Houses because it is constitutionally illegal to found banks named “Islamic”. These banks tended to concentrate in the Turkish cities that have registered the most votes for the Islamists. The author, in some details, examines the development of Asya Finance, which is affiliated to Islamic Fethullah Gulen Community, as an example of Islamic banking. Fethullah Gulen who believes in a sufi cult and known for his philanthropic and welfare works getting support of moderate as well as secularists to counter the radical Islamists. As compared to other special finance houses, performance of the Asya Finance is continuously improving. An interesting feature of Asya Finance is that the proportion of mudarabah financing reached to 41 percent, almost equal to murabahah financing. The establishment of the Union of special finance houses in 2001, which provides guarantees for depositors’ money in case of bankruptcy, has strengthen the position of Islamic banking and finance in Turkey.
combination of local, national and transnational scales. It is also important to recognise that at each of these scales, powerful notions of what counts as Islam tend to get imposed as the norm. In contrast, more 'demotic' or everyday lived experiences of being Muslim in the home, the street or elsewhere have been marginalized in research as much as public policy. So, while in the past policymakers and researchers overlooked the significance of religion, it is common now for formal and institutional constructions of religion to be overplayed. Indeed, the way that both government and Islamic leaders can view ‘Muslim’ identities as relatively fixed can be mutually reinforcing. Another consequence is that the fuzziness of everyday improvisations of ‘doing’ religion can become obscured, with hard boundaries always assumed between ‘religion’ and ‘culture’ and ‘religion’ and the ‘secular’. What is required instead is an account which locates the multiple and often competing ways in which Islam is, or is not, narrated and performed in specific, structurally constrained contexts. Such an agenda will properly refocus attention on differently positioned embodied subjects and the reasons why they do, or do not, identify as Muslims, at specific intersections of class, gender, ethnicity, generation and sexuality.