The (Un)Substantiated in Dan Diner’s Interpretations of the Islamic World’s “Backwardness”

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Enes Karić

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Abstract

The author develops a dialogue with thoughts and views of Dan
Diner expressed in his book Lost in the Sacred (originally published
in German as Versiegelte Zeit). This essay focuses on – and disputes
– Diner’s contentions that the Arab and Muslim/Islamic worlds are
backward due to their resistance to such western concepts as
democracy, human rights, and social and educational institutions,
not to mention the Arabic alphabet and language and the Qur ’an
(e.g., printing the text on a printing press, variant readings, and as
an obstacle to progress) themselves.

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