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The New World of Islam

Reader comment on item: A 1914 Novel's Prescient Vision of Londonistan

Submitted by Pied Piper (Saudi Arabia), May 28, 2014 at 23:07

An even more prescient and certainly more readable account of the origins of the contemporary state of Islam is the tome by the scholar Lothrop Stoddard, The New World of Islam (1922). A short quote from the preface to the first edition pretty much summarizes Stoddard's theme and warning:

"The entire world of Islam is today in profound ferment. From Morocco and China and from Turkestan to the Congo, the 200,000,000 followers of the Prophet Muhammad are stirring to new ideas, new impulses, new aspirations. A gigantic transformation is taking place whose results must affect all mankind."

1922? There were scholars already thinking like this? What's amazing is not that the warnings were heralded so early in the 20th century but rather how much they were totally ignored. (Who's ever heard of Stoddard or who even quotes him?)

Another quote, this one from his first chapter, could easily have been written last week in any international forum: "Islam is, in fact, to-day torn between the forces of liberal reform and chauvinistic reaction."

A must read, in my opinion, not only for its historical value but for its astonishing up-to-dateness.

Stoddard was heavy into "eugenics" of one sort or another so the reader has to keep that in mind as his writings are influenced in that direction.. Still, he makes available information in this one source hard to find elsewhere.

Full-text online at <http://www.questia.com/library/4462138/the-new-world-of-islam> but I think you have to register and pay (I also can't imagine reading an entire *book* onlineā€¦I'd go blind.) Real book copies easily available at Amazon cheap.

Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Daniel Pipes replies:

Yes, this is another fascinating book from around a century ago; I have ideas to write about it too.

Stoddard is forgotten today because his racist ideas have discredited him. But his book on Islam is quite free of those and, as you say, remains of interest today. But he was much read and highly regarded in the 1920s to the point that he's mentioned (with title and author intentionally garbled) in The Great Gatsby.

Better (and free) versions of the book can be found at http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/24107

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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