Islam, Politics and Youth in Malaysia: The Pop-Islamist Reinvention of PAS, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Islam, Politics and Youth in Malaysia

The Pop-Islamist Reinvention of PAS, 1st Edition

By Dominik M. Mueller


196 pages | 4 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780815373506
pub: 2017-10-26
Hardback: 9780415844758
pub: 2014-03-04
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pub: 2014-03-05
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Providing an ethnographic account of the Islamic Party of Malaysia (PAS) and its Youth Wing (Dewan Pemuda PAS), this book analyses the genesis and role of Islamic movements in terms of their engagement in mainstream politics. It explores the party’s changing approach towards popular culture and critically investigates whether the narrative of a post-Islamist turn can be applied to the PAS Youth.

The book shows that in contrast to the assumption that Islamic marketization and post-Islamism are reinforcing each other, the PAS Youth has strategically appropriated and integrated Islamic consumerism to pursue a decidedly Islamist – or ‘pop-Islamist’ – political agenda. The media-savvy PAS Youth elites, which are at the forefront of implementing new outreach strategies for the party, categorically oppose tendencies of political moderation among the senior party. Instead, they are most passionately calling for the establishment of a Syariah-based Islamic oder for state and society, although these renewed calls are increasingly expressed through modern channels such as Facebook, YouTube, rock music, celebrity advertising, branded commodities and other market-driven forms of social movement mobilization.

A timely and significant contribution to the literature on Islam and politics in Malaysia and beyond, this book sheds new light on widespread assumptions or even hopes of "post-Islamism". It is of interest to students and scholars of Political Religion and Southeast Asian Politics.


"Muller adds crucial pieces to the puzzle of how an often essentialising and exclusionary ethnically based Islamist party is seeking to rule a multicultural, multi-ethnic modern state like Malaysia." - Gerhard Hoffstaedter, Anthropos

Table of Contents

Introduction 1. Conceptual Framework: Islamism, Post-Islamism or Pop-Islamism? 2. The Politics of Islam in Malaysia 3. The Islamic Party of Malaysia (PAS) and its youth wing 4. The Pop-Islamist reinvention of PAS: Anthropological observations 5. Conclusions

About the Author

Dominik Muller is a postdoctoral fellow in political and legal anthropology at Goethe-University Frankfurt, Germany. He has held fellowships and visiting positions at Stanford University, the University of Brunei Darussalam, and the University of Oxford.

About the Series

Routledge Contemporary Southeast Asia Series

The aim of this series is to publish original, high-quality work by both new and established scholars on all aspects of Southeast Asia.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General