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Bibliography on Islamic nationalist or “fundamentalist” movements in S. Asia comparable to Hindutva & Hindu nationalism


Compiled by Linda Hess

This is a non-alphabetical, chaotic compilation of info that came in response to my RISA query regarding Islamic nationalist or “fundamentalist” movements in S. Asia comparable to Hindutva & Hindu nationalism.  Short annotations included, long commentaries omitted. 


Ayesha Jalal, Self and Sovereignty, OUP,  2001


Peter van der Veer, Religious nationalism. Hindus and Muslims in India, OUP, 1996; for the post-1947 and specially post-Ayodhya period


For Hyderabad, the Ittihad ul Muslimin, which took power in 1947, may well be classified as a right wing movement. I've touched the subject  in Margit Pernau. Passing of Patrimonialism", Manohar, 2000.


There is some work on the Khaksar movement, but for this the person to contact would be Jamal Malik at Erfurt university (Jamal.Malik@Uni-Erfurt.de), who had also worked on Madrasas in Pakistan.

On Alllama Mashriqi (Founder of the Khaksar Movement, also known as Khaksar
Tehreek) see:

Well worth consulting for the present relations between the  communities,

Imtiaz Ahmad, Helmut Reifeld (eds.), Lived Islam in South Asia. Adaptation, Accommodation and Conflict, Delhi, Social Science Press, 2004.


Marty / Scott (ed.): The Fundamentalism Project. 5 Vol. Chicago et. al. 1991-95,


Yazbeck, Haddad et. al.: The Contemporary Islamic Revival. A Critical

Survey and Bibliography. Westport 1991


Yazbeck, Haddad et. al: The Islamic Revival since 1988. A Critical Survey and

Bibliography 1997.


The more important monographies for Pak are:

- Binder: Religion and Politics in Pakistan. Berkeley 1961

- Metcalf: Islamic Revival in British India. Deoband 1860-1900.  Princeton 1982 (The New Delhi Reprint of  2002 has a very good foreword summarazing the latest findings)


Also Metcalf’s "Traditional" Islamic Activism: Deoband, Tablighis and Talibs, ISIM

Papers 4. Leiden 2002


- Nasr: The Vanguard of the Islamic Revolution. The Jama'at-i Islami of

Pakistan. Berkeley 1994

and her Mawdudi and the Making of Islamic Revivalism. New York 1996


- Masud (Ed.): Travellers in Faith. Studies of the Tablighi Jama'at as a Transnational Islamic Movement for  Faith Renewal. Leiden 2000


Gerald Larson: "India's Agony over Religion," pp. 119 ff. and  pp. 226 ff., dealing to some extent with the Muslim traditions.  See also the notes for further suggestions for reading.  I

personally  dislike the term "fundamentalism" as an analytic or descriptive characterization--this just seems to muddy the waters by way of understanding Islamist groups! 


The single most important figure in Muslim religious nationalism in South

Asia (also influential outside South Asia) was Maulana Maududi (1903-1979),

the founder of the Jamaat-I Islami.  One place to start (though I guess  it is pretty old by now,)  is Mumtaz Ahmad, ©¯Islamic Fundamentalism: The Jamaat-i-Islami and the Talighi Jamaat, ©¯ in Fundamentalisms Observed, Martin E. Marty and R. Scott Appleby, eds.,

457-530 (Chicago:  University of Chicago Press, 1991). 


Maybe more accessible (at least shorter) is Charles J. Adams, ©¯Mawdudi and the

Islamic State,©˜ in Voices of Resurgent Islam, John L. Esposito, 99-133 (New

York: Oxford University Press, 1983).


When citing Maududi, a rebuttal of his ideas on women and the roles they ought to observe that is rarely noted but constitutes a trenchant  critique, written by a fellow national, is the book by Khan, Mazhar-ul-Haq.  Purdah and Polygamy. New Delhi: Harnam Publications, 1983. It replies to Madudi's ideas, as found e.g., in his Purdah and the Status of

Woman in Islam. Translated and edited by al-Ash`ari. Lahore, Islamic Publications, 1972.


On the Tablighis, the most recent publication is the paperback by

Yoginder Sikand (Delhi 2004) Origins and Development of the Tablighi-Jama'at (1920-2000): A Cross-Country Comparative Study


Other works by Yoginder Sikand:

Muslims in India Since 1947: Islamic Perspectives on Inter-Faith Relations (Royal Asiatic Society S.)      

Sacred Spaces: Exploring Traditions of Shared Faith in India

The role of Kashmiri Sufis in the promotion of social reform and communal harmony, 14th-16th century


"The Coming Transformation in the Muslim World" by Dale F. Eickelman. in *Currrent History* (Jan. 2000?).


Brigadier Nazir Ahmad: *Quranic and Non-Quranic Islam* (2nd ed. Vanguard Books, 1997).


ch. 15 in John Esposito's *Oxford History of Islam* (pp. 643-690): "Contemporary Islam, Reformation or Revolution?"It's online at:



Modernist Islam 1840-1940. A Sourcebook   Ed. Charles Kurzman (Oxford, 2002)

Section 5 (ed. by Marcia K. Hermansen) is on South Asia (pp. 273-338)


The most influential articles (though dated) are probably those by Paul Brass and Francis Robinson in _Political Identity in South Asia_ (eds. D. Taylor and M. Yapp, Curzon 1979). These two articles take opposing theoretical perspectives to each other, which makes them quite helpful for figuring out the issues involved in understanding South Asian Islamic politics, though I think they go a bit farther than just the right-wing or "fundamentalist" movements.


Other articles of interest:

Barbara Metcalf, "Islamic arguments in contemporary Pakistan," in W. Roff, ed. _Islam and the Political Economy of Meaning_ (U of California Press, 1987).


John Esposito, "Pakistan: quest for Islamic identity," in J. Esposito, ed. _Religion and Sociopolitical Change_ (Syracuse UP, 1980).


Elora Shehabuddin, "Beware the bed of fire: gender, democracy, and the Jama'at-i Islami in Bangladesh." _Journal of Women's History_ 1999, 10(4): 148-71.


Farhat Haq, "Women, Islam and the state in Pakistan." _The Muslim World_ 1996, 86(2): 158-75.


Muhammad Qasim Zaman, "Sectarianism in Pakistan: the radicalization of Shi'i and Sunni identities." _South Asian Studies_ 1998, 32(3): 689-716.


I also asked about percentages of Mulsim and non-Muslim populations in Pakistan & Bangladesh.

One person said:

Pakistan 97% Muslim

Bangladesh 87% Muslim and 13% Hindu


Another said:

The 1946 proportion of non-Muslims, mainly Hindus and Sikhs, in what became Pakistan is commonly estimated as ca. 11%.  Today, the minorities are only 3%, mostly Christians.

Muslims are 97% unless the 4% Ahmadiya heretics are counted separately. There is a slow but steady decline in the percentages of all non-Muslim minorities.


For Bangladesh, non-Muslims were ca. 30% pre-1947.  [After further migration and violence] around 1950 the non-Muslims were still ca. 23%.  Today, they are ca. 11%. 





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Revised: November 11, 2006