By Charles Lindholm
The Islamic heart East is a unprecedented, thought-provoking account of the origins, nature, and evolution of Islam that offers a ancient viewpoint important to realizing the modern center East.
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Extra info for The Islamic Middle East: Tradition and Change
It is also crucial to note that honor is not only personal, but is also inextricably located within the patrilineal and patriarchal families, clans, and tribes into which men and women are born, and to which they owe obligations of loyalty and support. As we shall see, these ideals also coincide with strong cultural assumptions about female weakness and inferiority, with negative racial and ethnic stereotyping, and with notions of noble and base lineages ± all of which contradict the premise of human equality.
Swat had a king while I was ®rst working there. In Morocco, the Glawi ruled what amounted to a state within a state during the Protectorate. But, as among pastoralists, when secular authority does arise it is usually due to external causes ± often occurring when a leader is required to rally the tribes against invasion. A capacity for unity in defense is the source of the remarkable ability of these mountain groups to keep their independence, and to this day mountain tribes, more than any others, have proven extremely resistant to state takeover.
Like the rest of the people of the wilderness, these mountaineers expound values of hospitality, honor, integrity, generosity, bravery, and so on. They also are deeply egalitarian, and have a strong antipathy to submitting to any form of state authority; the Pukhtun, for instance, de®ned independence to me as ``not paying taxes''; they make an invidious distinction between ``yaghestan'', the vaunted land of freedom where they live, and ``hukomat'', the despicable land of governance, where peasant farmers live.