By David Dean Commins
Spiritual neighborhood and state have lengthy been the executive poles of political and cultural identification for peoples of the trendy center East. This paintings explores how males in turn-of-the-century Damascus dealt, in observe and deed, with the dilemmas of id that arose from the Ottoman Empire's 19th-century reforms. Muslim spiritual students (ulama) who encouraged a go back to scripture because the foundation of social and political order have been the pivotal crew. The reformers clashed with their fellow ulama who defended the integrity of triumphing spiritual practices and ideology. as well as conflicting interpretations of Islam, Arabism comprised a brand new strand of notion represented by means of younger males with secular educations advancing Arab pursuits within the Ottoman Empire. non secular reformers and Arabists shared a political schedule that shifted concentration from constitutionalism sooner than 1908 to administrative decentralization presently thereafter. utilizing unpublished manuscripts and correspondence, inheritance files, and Ottoman-era periodicals, this paintings weaves jointly social, political, and highbrow facets of an area historical past that represents an example of a primary factor in sleek history.