Al-dawla al-fatimiyya: Politics, history and the re-interpretation of Islam

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Abstract

This study focuses on the ways and forms through which Mu’ammar al-_Kadhdha¯fı¯ reproposes theopportunity of a proclamation (i’la¯n) of the second dawla fa¯timiyya in North Africa, in theframework of history, politics and re-interpretation of Islam. This topic has been scarcelystudied by Western scholars and analysts interested in the thinking and political action of theleader of Tripoli. My intention, here, is to highlight, though briefly, the peculiar modalitiesand forms through which al-_Kadhdha¯fı¯ re-reads history in general, and the history of thedawla fa¯timiyya in particular, by taking into account the political and ideological choices ofthe Libyan leadership. In conducting this re-reading with relation to the role of the dawlafa¯timiyya in North Africa, two are the interconnected aspects which I think are worth mentioning:1) the meaning of history and historiography, as in the case of the affirmation of the dawlafa¯timiyya in North Africa at the beginning of the 10th Century, with a special attentionto the debate on the caliph-imam and the role of the elites;2) Islam as an unifying system and the discourse on the ‘supposed’ differences betweensunna and shı¯’a. For the first, as well as for the second aspect, what seems fundamentalis the vision of al-_Kadhdha¯fı¯ with regard to the necessary unitarian recompositions inArabic and Islamic context, and more precisely in connection with Europe, togetherwith the relationship among Arab nationalism, Arabism and Islam.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-273
Number of pages11
JournalTHE JOURNAL OF NORTH AFRICAN STUDIES
Volume16
Publication statusPublished - 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Political Science and International Relations

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