The Kharijites were a splinter group that broke away from the main forces of Islam during the formative medieval period, purportedly refusing arbitration and committing bloody outrages against their fellow Muslims. Their influence in the political and theological life of the nascent faith has ensured their place in both critical and religious accounts of early Islamic history. Over the centuries, the Kharijites have repeatedly been invoked whenever militant opposition arose and today the label is frequently applied to extremist Islamic movements. After a brief look at Kharijite origins, this book focuses on contemporary Egypt. Kenney shows how religious images of the Kharijites have dominated public discussion about political opposition movements, effectively undermining attempts to discuss the real issues generating such movements.
Muslim Rebels: Kharijites and the Politics of Extremism in Egypt
28 October 2014
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