The Islamization of Arab nationalism

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Unlike all other present-day nationalities, Arab nationality is defined exclusively in terms of a single written language, which encompasses a huge range of mutually incomprehensible speech forms-the better to make the "Arab nationality" as large as possible, and to establish continuity between today's "Arabs" and the glorious past of the early Islamic conquerors. The secular version of Arabic nationalism lost its appeal when the Arab countries failed to unite politically and when they were defeated by Israel in 1967. The apparent Islamization of Arabic society since 1967 is actually a response to these failures. When "Arabs" perceived that secular ideology had failed to achieve their national goals, they turned to Islamism as a different strategy for achieving the same objectives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-43
Number of pages25
JournalCritical Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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