The Gulen Hizmet Movement and its Transnational Activities

Case Studies of Altruistic Activism in Contemporary Islam

by Sophia Pandya & Nancy Gallagher (co-editors)

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Synopsis

This volume of essays on the Gulen, or Hizmet (service) movement, a Turkish, Sufi Muslim, and humanitarian civil society group, looks at the recent activities of its followers to practice their form of Islam and carry out collective interfaith projects at the international level. It adds to the newly burgeoning discourse by focusing on the ways in which participants challenge ideological and sectarian boundaries. Included are essays which discuss how the movement is organized, structured, and institutionalized in many parts of the world, explore Turkey’s global influence, evaluate criticisms of the movement, and suggest directions for further research. While most previous scholarly attention has focused on the theological and philosophical ideas of Fethullah Gulen, the movement’s inspirational figure, less attention has been paid to the ways in which participants have interpreted and carried out Gulen’s messages in the contemporary world.

About The Author

Sophia Pandya is an assistant professor at California State University at Long Beach, in the department of Religious Studies. She received her BA from UC Berkeley in Near Eastern Studies/Arabic, and her MA and PhD from UC Santa Barbara in Religious Studies. A Fulbright scholar, she wrote her dissertation about Sunni and Shi‘i Bahraini women, and the ways in which globalization and modern education impacted their religious activities and beliefs. She also has written several articles on Middle Eastern women, religious change, and globalization.

Nancy Gallagher is professor of History at the University of California, Santa Barbara and the American University in Cairo, where she is also Study Center Director of the University of California Education Abroad Program. She is the author of Quakers in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: The Dilemma of NGO Humanitarian Activism (AUC Press, 2007; digital edition 2011); Femmes, Cultures, et Sociétés au Maghreb, coedited with Rahma Bourqia and Mounira Charrad (Afrique Orient, 1996); Approaches to the History of the Middle East: Interviews with Leading Historians (Reading: Ithaca Press, 1994 and 1996); Egypt's Other Wars: Epidemics and the Politics of Public Health, (Syracuse University Press, 1990 and American University in Cairo Press, 1993) ; Medicine and Power in Tunisia, 1780-1900 (Cambridge University Press, 1983), digital edition, 2002. She is past president of the American Association for Middle East Women’s Studies and was co-editor of Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies from 2006-2010. She is currently writing on volunteerism in Egypt and participating in the AUC University on the Square Project documenting the Egyptian Revolution of 25 January 2011.