Hardback
November 5, 2024
9780253071033
English
224
9 b&w illus.
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6.00 Inches (US)
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v2.1 Reference
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November 5, 2024
9780253071040
English
224
9 b&w illus.
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6.00 Inches (US)
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v2.1 Reference

Read in the Name of Your Lord

Islamic Literacy Development in Revolutionary Egypt

Egypt's January 2011 uprising spurred millions to action with a cacophony of demands—including the call to address Egypt's education crisis (azmat al-talīm) and adult literacy rates.

Read in the Name of Your Lord traces the push for universal literacy as a project caught between revolutionary activism and Islamic reformism in post-Mubarak Egypt. Despite their many disagreements, religious reformers, revolutionaries, and state actors converged on literacy as the first step toward realizing aspirations of the revolution. They invoked the verse Muslims believe was the first to be revealed, "Read in the name of your Lord," to teach literacy as a religious duty and the foundation for the country's future. Nermeen Mouftah unravels how this religiously inspired push for universal literacy was born of twenty-first-century scripturalism and simultaneously went beyond the Quran, to make reading and writing virtuous acts of the liberal state. While the new infrastructures of literacy reform soon vanished and adult literacy rates stagnated by 2017, these efforts revealed the importance of recognizing alternative modes of text processing and the personhood and knowledge of nonliterate people.

Read in the Name of Your Lord demonstrates how the rise in modern scripturalism underpinned literacy activism, blurring the binary between secular and religious knowledge.

About the Author

Nermeen Mouftah is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Illinois Chicago.

Reviews

"Mouftah's careful ethnographic examination of adult literacy programs in Egypt acts as an intersection from which the reader can turn one way or another to explore everything from debates about Qur'anic hermeneutics and contemporary theories of development, to gender and language ideologies, the false promises of neoliberalism, and the cruel optimism of revolutionary hope."—Gregory Starrett, author of Putting Islam to Work: Education, Politics, and Religious Transformation in Egypt

"In addition to tracing the social life of literacy campaign in Egypt, this book provocatively questions the privileging of literacy in the first place. Mouftah gives spaces to ways of knowing that rely on other modes of experiencing text. This pivot animates the very subjects who are objects of reform campaigns and in this Mouftah reverses the gaze and calls into question the readers' underlying assumptions."—Shenila Khoja-Moolji, author of Forging the Ideal Educated Girl: The Production of Desirable Subjects in Muslim South Asia

 

9780253071033 : read-in-the-name-of-your-lord-mouftah
Hardback
November 5, 2024
$80.00 USD
9780253071040 : read-in-the-name-of-your-lord-mouftah
Paperback / softback
November 5, 2024
$30.00 USD

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