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Kerala Muslims: A Historical Perspective

Asghar Ali Engineer (Editor)
Synopsis There is much controversy about the advent of Islam in India. Generally it is assumed that Islam entered India through invaders who spread it with the might of sword. This myth needs to be contained as it is one of the powerful tools in the hands of communalists. The fact is that Islam entered India through west coast during the life time of the holy prophet himself with the help of Arab traders. Probably the first converts to Islam in India were the people of Malabar in Kerala in the early 7th century. It is said that the then ruler of Malabar himself went to Medina and converted to Islam on the hands of the prophet. "This may or may not be historically true but it is sure indicator of the fact the Islam entered Kerala through peaceful means. The word Malabar is in fact distortion of the Arabic word ma'bar which means a place one passes through. "The essays in this edited volume take account of the Kerala Muslims through history. These essays by competant historians and scholars given an insight into the history of Kerala Muslims. These essays cover different aspects and historical movements before and after the British rule. One of the essays discusses the Muslim revolt of 1921 and its causes. This revolt has also been much misunderstood. It is construed as anti-Hindu, through it was anti-British and anti-landlords. Some of the essays take stock of various rituals and festivals of Kerala Muslims and how these rituals and festivals were influenced by the Hindu religious practices. Another essay also takes stock of the modernization and educational movements among the Kerala Muslims in nineteenth century. The volume will be of great interest to all those who want to understand the historical situation of Kerala Muslims who continue to play an important role in secular and democratic India." (jacket) [Asghar Ali Engineer also wrote Indian Muslims, Communalism in India and The Rights of Women in Islam.
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About the author

Asghar Ali Engineer

Prof. Asghar Ali Engineer is an internationally known Islamic scholar, a dedicated social reformer and an ardent advocate of inter-religious dialogue. He is specially trained in Islamic theology. Tafsir (commentary of the holy Qur’an) Islamic Jurisprudence and Hadith. He is now the Chairman of the Centre for the Study of Society and Secularism, and Chief Editor of the quarterly Indian Journal of Secularism. He serves also as member of the Governing Council of the foundation for Communal Harmony of the government of India. Prof. Engineer has written more than forty books and a number of scholarly articles. He has held many responsible offices like Vice President of People’s Union for Civil Liberties and chairman of the Committee for Communal Harmony. He is also recipient of important awards like National Communal Harmony Award from the Ministry of Home Affairs, government of India and Hakim Khan Sur Award for National Integration from Maharana Mewar Foundation.

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Bibliographic information

Title Kerala Muslims: A Historical Perspective
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.1995
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
length 222p.