The Dallah Al-Baraka Lectures on Islamic Law and Civilization November 11, 2014
My aim is to identify three stages of the encounter with modernity as they unfolded in the Arab World over the last two centuries, with the hope of understanding the driving forces that helped define and redefine Arab conceptions of the modern. The narrative begins with the intensifying interaction with Europe in the early nineteenth century, which spurred the start of the cosmopolitan phase—a period illustrated primarily by the Levantine culture of the coastal cities of Egypt and the Levant. Conceptions of modernity then largely transitioned to a nationalist phase with its powerful dream of a supranational identity. This Pan-Arabism spread across the Arab World from Morocco to Bahrain, setting the stage for the present day’s phase: a religiously-imbued and at the same time a neoliberal capitalism best represented by the rich oil countries of the Arabian Gulf.
Date of Authorship for this Version
Rabbat, Nasser, "Encounters with Modernity in the Arab World" (2014). Occasional Papers. 14.