The Twelver Shi'a as a Muslim Minority in India : Pulpit of Tears book cover
1st Edition

The Twelver Shi'a as a Muslim Minority in India
Pulpit of Tears

ISBN 9780415664097
Published April 14, 2011 by Routledge
240 Pages

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Book Description

One of the most important current debates within and about Islam concerns its relation with power. Can Muslims be fundamentally content without power or as a minority? This book considers the voice of an important Muslim minority through its sermons. Indian Shi'i Muslims are a minority within a minority, constituting about ten to fifteen percent of the population as a whole, but comprising of about fifteen million people. Ten sermons are presented entirely and many more are quoted in order to analyze the preaching tradition in full. This book is the first survey to present the Indian mourning gathering and explain the history of this extraordinary phenomenon.

Table of Contents

An Introduction to the Shîa and the Events Surrounding the Battle of Karbala  Part 1: Context  1. From Karbala to India: A History of Shi'i Preaching  2. The Shîa of Hyderabad and their Mourning Gatherings  Part 2: Sermons  3. The Description of a Complete Mourning Gathering (Including the Text of Sermon 1)  4. Sermons by Male ‘Lay’ Preachers  6. Sermons by Religious Scholars  Part 3: Analysis  7. What the Sermons Do and How They Do It  8. Indian Shi'i Preaching as the Expression of a Minority Islamic Religious Identity

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Toby Howarth is currently Vice Principal of Crowther hall, at Selly Oak in Birmingham. A graduate of Yale University, Birmingham University and the Free University of Amsterdam, he has studied and worked in Birmingham, Oxford, Uganda, Egypt, Jerusalem, India, and the Netherlands. He speaks and writes widely in the field of Muslim-Christian relations.


'Howarth's lucid and well-researched work makes an important contribution to our understanding of the interplay between religion, rituals, and culture in the commemoration of Shii rituals in India.' - Liyakat Takim, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, Volume 70 Number 2, 2007