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Jamal al-Din al-Afghani and the Egyptian National Debate Author(s): Rudi Matthee Reviewed work(s): Source: International

Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 21, No. 2 (May, 1989), pp. 151-169 Published by: Cambridge University Press Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/163072 . Accessed: 03/01/2013 15:58
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Int. J. Middle East Stud. 21 (1989), 151-169. Printed in the United States of America

Rudi Matthee

JAMAL AL-DIN THE EGYPTIAN

AL-AFGHANI NATIONAL

AND DEBATE

A remarkable man in his own lifetime, Jamal al-Din al-Afghani became a legend after his death.' For many people, Afghani evokes an image that combines the medieval ideal of the cosmopolitan Islamic scholar with the romantic aura of the 19th-century revolutionary. Since the late 1960s, Afghani has been the object of particular attention and controversy in both the West and the Islamic world. Iranian and Western scholars have radically reinterpreted his background and beliefs.2 This reevaluation of Afghani on the basis of new information about him has, however, not been generally accepted in the Islamic world. If anything, recent attention to Afghani's unorthodoxy and possible irreligion has only served to harden his defenders by giving credence to his own statements. Afghani plays an important role in the historical image of Muslim unity and sophistication presented by many Islamic groups and governments in this age of revived panIslamism. His plea for Islamic renewal through solidarity never lost its relevance as a powerful symbol linking the past with hopes for the future. The image of Afghani as the indefatigable fighter against Western imperialism who helped make the Muslim world aware of its distinct identity remains equally as suggestive. The following discussion will not deal with the broad question of the appraisal of Afghani in the Islamic world at large, but will rather concentrate on his continuing role in Egypt, the country where his legacy is most strongly felt. It is in Egypt that the interpretation and reinterpretation of Afghani has most expressedly carried into the 1980s the discussion that has surrounded him since his death. The story of Afghani is interwoven with a crucial episode in Egyptian history; when, in 1983, the Egyptian intellectual Louis 'Awad drastically reinterpreted Afghani's role, he implicitly offered a revisionist view of Egyptian history. At a time when every ideological current searches the past to legitimize its own beliefs and above all its vision of Egypt's future, the political dimensions of revisionist history are more significant than ever. That is why the scope of the intellectual controversy that followed 'Awad's work on Afghani far exceeds that of academic discussion. That is also why the following discussion, aside from accepting the now-established fact that Afghani was born and raised in Iran, will focus less on the accuracy of the various points raised in the debate than on the political context of the controversy. Thus, the divergence of opinion this controversy has brought out is seen to reveal something of the stakes involved in the current Egyptian debate on the country's identity and future direction. More
? 1989 Cambridge University Press 0020-7438/89 $5.00 + .00

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specifically, this divergence directly reflects the current struggle in Egypt between the adherents of what is called the "Islamic alternative" and those who fear a further extension of the place religion occupies in public life.3 The Egyptian Afghani polemic, in addition, is seen to reflect important issues in the wider Arab and Muslim intellectual discourse, such as the nature and task of historical investigation and criticism.
AFGHANI IN IRAN AND EGYPT

Iran and Egypt are the two countries where the current attention to Afghani raises the most interesting questions of self-perception and historiography. Iran was Afghani's birthplace, and Iranian scholars were the first to question some of the information he provided about himself.4 It should be stressed, however, that in Iran Afghani never attained the popularity and the symbolic stature he enjoys in Egypt. He has never been a symbol of Iranian nationalism, a nationalism that has been overwhelmingly secular and has rarely had a pan-Islamic component into which Afghani would fit. In Iran, moreover, a reappraisal of Afghani's background has been possible without straining nationalist beliefs or religious sensitivities. Indeed, the Iranian self-image only stood to gain from the Iranian version of Afghani's birth and childhood. If Jamal al-Din had been dishonest about his homeland and Shi'i upbringing, the true story added a figure of renown to the Iranian kin and the ShiCi community. In today's Iran, Afghani enjoys unprecedented fame. His anti-imperialism, expressed in Islamic terms, makes Afghani an deal symbol for the mixture of Islam and "Third Worldist" ideology espoused by the Islamic Republic.5 His present stature ostensibly has little bearing on questions of national identity. But as national and religious images overlap considerably in present-day Iran, Afghani is, in practice, more of an official national hero than he ever was before. He ranks with figures like Sheikh Fazlollah Nuri and Ayatollah Kashani as a precursor of the Islamic Republic.6 Egypt is the country where Afghani spent several of his most fruitful years and where his influence has been most far-reaching. In Egypt, as elsewhere, Afghani is seen as an intellectual giant whose capacity to grasp the West's cultural and scientific secrets enabled him to resist the West, as well as to institute reform in the Muslim world. In Egypt, in addition, this perception of Afghani is intimately linked with a national image that traces the beginnings of the Egyptian-Arab cultural "reawakening"not to Napoleon's invasion of Egypt, but to the Egyptian resistance against Ottoman and Western domination in the second half of the 19th century. Although there are good reasons for the special Egyptian respect paid to Afghani, his prestige in Egypt goes far beyond his accomplishments during his eight-year stay in Cairo. Paradoxically, the non-Egyptian Afghani has become a most vital element in the Egyptian repository of nationalist symbols. He shares that quality with Salah al-Din and Muhammad CAli,though for different reasons. Salah al-Din fits into the Egyptian national context as the Kurdish-Arab sultan who withstood the early imperialism of the Crusades.7 Muhammad 'Ali's

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Albanian-Ottoman background is generally minimized to emphasize his role as the ruler who laid the groundwork for modern Egypt.8 But where Salah al-Din links Egypt with the Arab world in a common struggle against the West and Muhammad 'Ali symbolizes the dawn of modern Egypt, Jamal al-Din alAfghani combines Egypt, the Arab world, and the Islamic community in a selfimage that traces Egypt's modern national identity to a 19th-century story of renewal and resistance.9 Afghani epitomizes the self-view of a 19th-century Egyptian reform movement leading the country to national emancipation while guiding the Arab world in its rise against the Ottoman Empire and its struggle against the West. In his later years, Afghani is known to have favored the Ottoman political framework. Furthermore, he seems to have referred mostly to ancient Egypt in inciting Egyptian national pride. Yet, an important current in Egyptian historiography views him as a crucial link in establishing Egypt as the leader of the Arab world and the united Muslim defiance of Western imperialism. Afghani's dual role as reformer within Egypt and as its defender against the outside world has become enshrined as national history through the hagiographic portrayal of him begun by his closest disciple Muhammad 'Abduh, who is himself a crucial figure in the Egyptian myth of 19th-century reform and renewal.10 This renewal myth has, in the last two decades, gained new relevance as it has become integrated into the renewed search for, and reassertion of, indigenous religious-cultural Arab-Islamic legacy (turath) by predominantly leftist intellectuals. The turath debate, which has strong Arabo-centric overtones and is not confined to Egypt, should be seen as the expression of a search for a collective reassertion of identity in the face of a continued, and still growing, presence of Western patterns and symbols. In Egypt, it joins the century-old discussion over the nature of the country's affiliation with the Arab and Islamic world. In the 1980s, this discussion has come to dominate the country's intellectual agenda as a result of the reemergence of religious extremism in and around Egypt and continued pressure to institute the Shari'a as a component of the Egyptian legislature. Afghani figures in this discussion in a powerfully symbolic way. Insofar as the desire to "Islamize" Egypt is combined with the desire of the faithful to apply the divine law and the sociopolitical wish to "respiritualize"an Egyptian society that is seen as too receptive to Western materialism, Afghani is hailed as a precursor by groups across the Islamic political spectrum.1 Ironically, Afghani, who neither was Arab nor saw Arabs as privileged Muslims, is not only presented as a founder of the quest for the Arab-Islamic legacy, but has also been incorporated as an essential part of that legacy itself.
THE CAWAD CONTROVERSY

In the 20th century, the intellectual debate on Egypt's identity has gone through various stages. The aftermath of the 1919 Revolution marked the heyday of Egyptian-territorial "Pharaonism," a trend that took pride in Egypt's pre-Islamic civilization rather than in Islam or Arabism. Pharaonism was followed in the 1930s and 1940s by the pan-Arab and pan-Islamic currents that

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attacked the idea of Egypt being the heartland of a Nilotic civilization as a Western-inspired fiction and proclaimed that the country was an indivisible part of the Arab and Muslim world.'2 More recently, an Islamic component infused with new notions of ideology and resistance has emerged as an important factor in discussions about Egypt's identity. Throughout the flux and reflux of this prolonged discussion, certain themes have periodically led to controversy and scandal. Among these are the question of the orthogenesis of Islamic culture and the issue of adherence to traditional methods of inquiry. In the 20th century figures like Jurji Zaydan, 'Ali CAbdal-Raqiz, and Taha Husayn have touched off religious and cultural sensitivities because they questioned the cultural autonomy and integrity of early Islam on the basis of methods and interpretations used in Western scholarship.13 Those who have questioned Egypt's indissoluble bond with the Arab and Islamic world have provoked similar accusations of treason and disbelief. A good example of this in the cultural realm is the heated debate around Tawfiq al-Hakim in the late 1970s.14 An example of a case in which religious and national issues and sensitivities converge is the controversy that arose in the mid-1980s over the portrayal of Jamal al-Din al-Afghani by the renowned literary critic Louis 'Awad. The immediate cause of what may be called the "'Awad case" was the appearance, in the spring of 1983, of a serialized study of Jamal al-Din al-Afghani by Louis 'Awad in the Arab magazine at-Tadamon.'5 At-Tadamon, which is published in London, is ordinarily available in Cairo but seems not to have been on sale for the duration of the Afghani series.16 The reactions in the Egyptian press were nevertheless quick and hostile. Al-Ahram led the national press in a series of reactions to cAwad's reinterpretation of al-Afghani that were unanimous in their condemnation of what was seen as an impermissible downgrading of this reformer-scholar.17In 1984, the reaction to cAwad's "bold study" culminated in a rebuttal in book form by the well-known scholar Muhammad 'Imara, entitled, The Maligned Jamal al-Din al-Afghani.'8 Finally, in 1986, 'Awad's original series was published in book form in Cairo in a volume on Egyptian thought from the period of the Khedive Isma'il until 1919 that included shorter studies of the 19th-century men of letters Ya'qub Sanuca and 'Abd Allah Nadim.19 The following discussion will focus on the polemic between Louis 'Awad and Muhammad 'Imara as a case study that assembles the various ideological components of the current debate in Egypt (and beyond) over collective identity and the role of politics and culture in tomorrow's society.
LOUIS CAWAD AND AFGHANI

Louis 'Awad is no stranger to the Egyptian debate on national identity, and for a good understanding of the Afghani controversy it is necessary to sketch his role and reputation in Egyptian intellectual circles. 'Awad enjoys particular notoriety for his criticism of pan-Arabism and Arab nationalism. In numerous writings, cAwad has equated both ideologies with primitive desert origins alien to Egypt and, politically, with racial arguments similar to those of Nazism.20 For

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'Awad, who is a Copt, Egypt's roots go back to Pharaonic times, and many of the country's rituals and beliefs can be traced to that origin. Evidently an heir to the Pharaonic "wave" of the 1920s in this respect, 'Awad's nationalism similarly goes back to earlier notions about the uniqueness of Egyptian civilization. He argues that those who have advocated Egypt's affinity with a wider Arab or Islamic community, such as al-Afghani, al-Kawakibi, Rashid Rida, and Sati' al-Husri, have mostly been non-Egyptian.21 Equally infuriating to many are 'Awad's ideas about language as a vehicle of national identity, another area where he is preceded by a minority intellectual current in the 1920s. 'Awad's religion makes him insensitive to the metaphysical dimension of Arabic as the language of the Holy Writ. To 'Awad, the various spoken Arabic dialects are comparable to the Latin dialects that evolved into separate languages after the breakdown of the Roman Empire. Since a similar process is taking place in the Arab world, 'Awad sees no reason to hold on to a myth of Arab or Arabic unity and to deny the reality of a distinctly Egyptian language characterizing a unique nation.22 'Awad has never concealed his adherence to a secularist and liberal ideology that draws heavily on humanistic European values.23 Atypical as his bourgeoisliberal style, religious affiliation, and age may appear, his position is similar to that of a sizeable group of younger Egyptian intellectuals who, in the 1980s, have shown themselves gravely concerned about what they see as an extremist-religious threat to the political and social order. In the last few years, leading intellectual figures such as Farag Fuda, Ghali Shukri, Fu'ad Zakariyya, and Husayn Ahmad Amin have written a great number of books and articles and participated in numerous debates and symposia organized around issues such as the degree to which the religious law should be applied, the lack of vigilance of the press regarding religious presumptuousness, and other topics concerning the relationship between religion and the state.24 The common line connecting these intellectuals could be described as secularist ('ilmani), provided that term is not interpreted as indifference to religion or loss of faith, but rather as a conviction that the religious law and the civil law and constitution are distinct bodies that should be kept separate. Their "secularism" or "neo-secularism"-to put their ideology in the context of newly politicized religion-is above all reflected in an intellectual concern about the preservation of a climate of free artistic activity where freedom of thought and expression is guaranteed.25That this preoccupation has not yet received much Western attention, academic or otherwise, does not mean that those who voice it are marginal or that they do not reflect wider sentiments in Egyptian society.26 The relevance of 'Awad's Afghani study lies less in its factual content than in how it has been interpreted and its place in the "Islam versus secularism" debate in contemporary Egypt. cAwad offers no new information on Afghani beyond what has become known in the West through the writings of Homa Pakdaman, Nikki Keddie, and others. In fact, one of the problems with the study is its source material. CAwaddoes refer to British Foreign Office Records, but his references to other sources, such as the Cabul Precis and Iranian documents, are

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not supported by adequate footnoting and parallel what was earlier cited by the authors mentioned earlier. 'Awad, however, has clearly not written his book to please Western reviewers. His study is an attempt to demythologize Afghani for the Egyptian home audience and thereby to counter newly politicized Islam's claim to legitimacy and appropriation of history. Interestingly, 'Awad finished his Afghani study in 1975, but published it in Egypt only in 1986-in a climate where the study's contents were bound to be very controversial politically and also when the Egyptian government was clearly interested in abetting forces that resist further religious intrusions upon the country's political structure.27 What are 'Awad's main points? Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, 'Awad argues in his introduction, has become the Socrates of Islam: he wrote little and spoke much and created a legend around himself that was further elaborated by his disciples. In the course of time Afghani has become such a revered figure that he is beyond criticism-indeed, beyond research-in Egypt.28 'Awad next proceeds to furnish his revisionist conclusions about Afghani. The main points of his argument can be summarized as follows: a. Afghaniwas born in Iranand, hence,was a Shi'i. b. Afghani's growing up in a Babi and Shaikhi milieu accounts for his unorthodox
tendencies and his habit of dissimulating his real views. c. Afghani's own account of his life cannot be trusted. He had the tendency to present himself in an aggrandized role. Hence, the traditional biographies, which all derive from his own word, have to be questioned as well. d. Afghani was a religious progressive who saw religion as a means for the ignorant to attain happiness and political independence, but a political conservative who favored a benevolent despotism based on education. His goal was to rejuvenate the Muslim world within the framework of the Ottoman caliphate and political structure. e. While Afghani was fervently anti-British, he did not spark the 'Urabi revolt. On the other hand, his anti-British zeal overshadowed every other concern, including a desire for social and religious reform. f. In sum, Afghani was a man of contradictions. He was a religious thinker dealing in politics as much as a political thinker dealing in religion, and this mixture led to his failure.
MUHAMMAD CIMARA AND AL-AFGHANI

'Awad's portrait of Afghani has the clear ideological purpose of illustrating the incompatibility of religion and politics and the inevitable failure of any attempt to combine them. This theme most conspicuously connects his historical study with the present and would alone have been enough to elicit reactions from various sides; indeed, it did not go unnoticed in the criticism that followed the Tadamon series. The most formidable of his critics was the aforementioned Muhammad 'Imara. Imara, an Afghani specialist who has edited the (incomplete and uncritical) "complete writings" of Afghani, is a representative of a tendency in contemporary Egyptian intellectual circles to integrate a newly politicized Islamic point of view into an Arab nationalist framework.29cImara is one of the early protagonists of the idea that a retrieval from the Arab-Islamic turath of the authentic elements, which have been neglected and forgotten under foreign-

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Ottoman and Western-domination, is the only way for Egyptians and Arabs to withstand the undermining effects of the West and preserve their identity.30 Imara sees the conflict between East and West as a perennial struggle of essentialist dimensions that stretches all the way from the Sasanian-Byzantine wars, via the Crusades and the 18th-century trade domination, to 19th-century imperialism. In the 7th century, the Eastern resistance took on an Islamic appearance and the Arabs assumed a leading role.31In this historical scheme, the role of Afghani is invaluable, as he is seen as one of the founders and inspirers of the belated counter-movement in the 19th century. CImara resembles the Egyptian protagonists of Arabism in the 1930s in his insistence that the idea of an Arab community is based on cultural-and above all, linguistic-criteria, not racial and territorial ones.32 In the political and intellectual climate of the 1980s, 'Imara is one of those (formerly) leftist intellectuals who base their arguments about legitimacy partly on the QurDan and the Sunna and who favor the incorporation of the ShariCa into Egyptian legislation. These reformist thinkers seek to bridge the gap between the old pan-Arab Left-where most of them have their roots-and newly politicized Islam in an attempt to turn religion and its heritage to progressive use. Sometimes called "neo-salafiyyin" (salafiyyin judad), after the original salafiyya, the Islamic reformist movement around the turn of the century, this group is diverse and no more monolithic or organized than the "secularists." It includes well-known intellectuals, such as Tariq al-Bishri, CAdil Husayn, and Fahmi Huwaydi.33 A common characteristic of this group is that, ultimately, their arguments for a "return"to Islam and the turath, and for the application of the Shari'a, appear to be based more on a wish to end the Egyptian-Arab cultural and political dependence on the West and to "respiritualize"society than on the conviction that the Shari'a should be instituted because it is the divine law. Clearly, 'Awad and 'Imara occupy two opposing positions in the Egyptian political and intellectual spectrum. Hence, CImara'sreaction to 'Awad's Afghani study is based on more than disagreement over details. Before discussing the substance of CImara'sobjections to CAwad,it is useful to look at the general approach 'Awad's critics have taken in trying to discredit him. Three elements stand out in the way Imara and other commentators have attempted to refute 'Awad's arguments. The first is to question CAwad'scredentials and competence. CAwad, the critics agree, is a literary critic whose expertise in his own field is unquestioned. He should, however, have kept to his profession. Jamal al-Din al-Afghani respected the Arab-Islamic heritage, but CAwaddoes not subscribe to that heritage, or at least does not include Egypt in it. He is, therefore, not qualified to handle the subject he has chosen to write on.34According to cImara, CAwaddoes not acknowledge an Islamic component to Egypt's heritage and holds that "modern Egypt is Napoleon's gift."35This viewpoint disqualifies him from writing on something this vital to the Arab-Islamic cause with the necessary objectivity. The second allegation brought against CAwad by his critics concerns his motives. Interestingly, no one ascribes evil and anti-Muslim motives to CAwad because of his being a Copt. clmara, for one, is cautious to avoid any impression

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of Muslim-Christian antagonism as the cause of cAwad's bias. CAwad'sattacks on Arabism and Islam, 'Imara notes, while preceded and shared by the territorial nationalists (iqlimiVyun), are not attributable to his Christian beliefs. In fact, 'Awad himself is a controversial Christian who has praised Islam for its humanism and rationality.36This praise, however, 'Imara claims, is only reserved for Islam in its traditional form. 'Awad is not against al-Azhar as the bastion of tradition, and he has praised Muhammad 'Abduh for his contribution to Egyptian thought. He is, however, against "renewed" Islam, the form of politicized Islam that integrates religion, culture, and politics. And that, 'Imara insists, is why 'Awad is opposed to Afghani who, after all, was the founder of this integral form of Islam. The third, and most widely advanced complaint about 'Awad concerns his methodology. CAwad,his critics claim, has written an unscholarly study based on specious documents. The argument CImaraand others use in this context is as follows. It is a customary scholarly procedure to build on previous sources. The closer these sources are to the events or people they relate to, the more reliable 37 and relevant they are. Hence, the most important sources are the original ones.3 'Awad, however, is said to have violated this most basic of all rules. He went over all the traditional sources, noted that they express a consensus, and proceeded to reject this consensus. This would only be legitimate if he had presented other, more reliable source material that would support his revisionist view. Instead, cAwad spent time in the United States at the University of California in Los Angeles and used his time there to collect a series of spy reports.38 In addition, he was given a number of works written by Zionists and semi-Zionists. 'Awad used both kinds of sources to write his book under the pretense that he had opened Afghani's dossier. It is unforgivable that 'Awad has more faith in those sources than in the primary material, that is, Afghani's own words and those of his foremost biographer, 'Abduh.39 The argument about sources, while strongly reminiscent of the Islamic isnad tradition, whereby information is generally considered more reliable the closer the informant is to the sources, exemplifies a general tendency among believers to resist critical inquiries into the lives of their religion's founders. The issue of sources is particularly important in this case, as it goes to the heart of the Afghani controversy. Nikki Keddie, in her biography of Afghani, based her argument against the conventional wisdom about Afghani on the contention that most of this wisdom ultimately derived from Afghani's own descriptions about himself as recorded by his most devoted disciple, Muhammad 'Abduh. She further noted that 'Abduh had been the principal source for many subsequent accounts of Afghani, both Muslim and Western, which, therefore, cannot be considered independent sources.4 cAwad follows this line of reasoning in his study of Afghani and uses the breakup of the "traditional account" as a crucial part of his attempt to demythologize the man. In the reactions to 'Awad, one finds no real discussion of reinterpretations of Afghani's background based on new material that has come to light since Afghani's death. Much of this material, such as many of the unpublished documents collected by Afshar and Mahdavi and the recollections

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of Afghani's nephew Mirza Lotfollah Khan, is in Persian. Lotfollah Khan's book, however, has been translated into Arabic. Moreover, the Afshar-Mahdavi collection of unpublished Afghani material includes many Arabic documents relevant to Egypt. A number of these documents, which obviously are more primary than 'Abduh's apologetic account, are even reproduced, often photographically, in the published book in which this collection is catalogued. Yet, 'Imara and his fellow critics unanimously dismiss this material as irrelevant, and its findings and contentions as irrational.4' In their attempt to preserve the canonized version of "true" Islamic history against the attempt to historicize an important aspect of its modern mythical foundations, they have to preserve Jamal al-Din al-Afghani both as Afghan (and hence presumably Sunni by birth) and as a trustworthy and honest source about himself. In the face of critical historical scholarship done by other scholars, cAwad's critics opt for a reiteration of the conventional account, in combination with references to foreign slander, as the true source of the revisionist interpretation. A circular argument, then, reestablishes the conventional account.42Cmara, for example, attacks 'Awad by first presenting Afghani as the latter emerges from 'Abduh's description. He subsequently mentions Jurji Zaydan, Ernest Renan, Wilfried Blunt, and Ignac Goldziher to demonstrate that not just Muslim scholars have praised Afghani. 'Imara's ultimate purpose clearly is to ridicule 'Awad's deviant opinion in the face of what is supposed to look like a Muslim, Christian, and Jewish scholarly consensus. To achieve this, he has to omit a reference to the crucial fact that this consensus was not the result of any independent inquiry, but was only established for lack of the additional primary information now available.
AFGHANI'S ORIGINS AND RELIGIOUS BELIEFS

The effort by 'Awad's critics to reassert Afghani's Afghan and Sunni origins is not merely a question of trying to arrive at the truth. What is at stake is Afghani's prestige and standing in the Muslim world as an important protagonist of 19th-century Muslim defiance of Western imperialism. The image of this defiance serves as a source of legitimacy for present-day calls for Muslim resistance against the West. If Afghani is shown to have dissimulated his true origin, little stands in the way of accepting the allegation that his defense of Islam was equally expedient. This, in turn, would undermine the solidity of the Muslim tradition that undergirds the contemporary call for Muslim authenticity. cAwad's secular ideology does not impose any such considerations on his interpretation of Afghani. If anything, he seems intent on showing that Afghani, though he was an inspired and dedicated activist, ultimately did not further the cause of Islam. Following the now-accepted belief that Afghani was Iranian by birth, 'Awad does not hesitate to see logical connections between Afghani's dissimulation of his background and his presumed heterodoxy, even where most recent critical scholars have not wanted to go beyond speculation. Thus, he relates Jamal al-Din's background directly to an education along heterodox Babi and Shaikhi lines, ascribes Afghani's "taqiyya tendencies" to this experience, and does not fail to emphasize Afghani's opportunism.43 Awad goes well beyond any

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critical scholar in his view that Babism was important to Afghani. The most important of Afghani's convictions, linked by 'Awad to his Iranian-Shi'i background as well as to the 19th-century intellectual climate in Europe, concerns Afghani's religious beliefs. Afghani's preoccupation with Muslim weakness vis-avis the West, CAwadasserts, made him a participant in the 19th-century debate between Romantic idealism and positivist materialism. In this debate, he rejected both positions. Instead of returning to traditional religion or to reason, however, he founded his rejection upon the idea that the Muslim belief in miracles and an afterlife would be the best form of resistance against imperialism and cultural domination.44 Here, 'Awad insists, Afghani adopted a typically Shi'i distinction between the elite and the common people but also followed the antiegalitarian arguments of such Western philosophers as Hobbes and Voltaire. Afghani's aversion to notions of egalitarianism, 'Awad notes, is further reflected in his attack on all schools of thought that preached the equality of men-including communism, anarchism, and nihilism. Afghani's religious beliefs were pragmatic and utilitarian. His writings, in particular, the Refutation of the Materialists, demonstrate that the form of religion he thought useful for the strengthening of society did not represent his own religious convictions. Afghani was contradictory in the expression of his religious beliefs as well as in his political convictions. Thus, in India, he wavered between propagating a common linguistic identity of Muslims and Hindus against the British and calling for Muslim unity based on religion. His inconsistencies lead to the conclusion that Afghani was a religious thinker dealing in politics as much as a political thinker dealing in religion. Afghani's tragedy, 'Awad concludes in a clearly ideological verdict, was that he had no sense of priorities. He did not know what he wanted, but wanted everything-religion and politics (din wa dawla)-and therefore failed.45 Aside from referring to the biographical consensus about Afghani's origin and truthfulness, 'Imara and others use various standard arguments to counter 'Awad's allegations on these subjects. Thus, 'Imara dismisses the evidence for Afghani's Iranian origin as based on a report by an Afghan spy working for the British who speaks of a "Sayyid Rumi." There is no proof, 'Imara asserts, that Afghani is meant here.46 The idea that Afghani was Iranian, 'Imara claims, originated with the Persian Shah Mozaffar al-Din, who tried to have Afghani extradited from Istanbul so the latter could stand trial in connection with the assassination of Mozaffar al-Din's predecessor, Shah Naser al-Din, and therefore wrote a request to Sultan Abdulhamid attesting that Afghani was really Iranian.47Afghani's Sunni beliefs, 'Imara further affirms, are clear from the fact that the books he used in his lectures all reflect Sunni views and that Afghani himself criticized taqiyya and extremist tendencies in Islam.48 Ultimately, however, 'Imara cautions, Afghani's origin is unimportant in that his fatherland was the Muslim world. While it is understandable that Afghans and Iranians, Sunnis and Shi'is, are all eager to claim him, he was on balance a Muslim of whom the entire Muslim world can be proud.49 'Imara is similarly circumspect when he attacks 'Awad for presenting Afghani as concerned above all with the social utility of religion. Does Afghani, by talking about Islam's usefulness, deny Islam as reality and truth?, 'Imara rhetorically asks. There is no

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reference in 'Awad's study to Afghani's religious writings, 'Imara further notes. 'Awad relies on books and papers collected for him by the Orientalists who hosted him at UCLA. These people gave him an English translation of the Refutation of the Materialists, the work in which Afghani criticizes the Indians who collaborated with British imperialism. 'Imara claims that this translation does not contain the sections in which Afghani refutes all materialist, naturalist, and cosmological beliefs on religious grounds.50
AFGHANI BETWEEN NATION AND UMMA

The implication in the criticism of CAwadis unmistakable: 'Awad is malicious, but ultimately naively follows the West in its disingenuous portrayal of Afghani. In 'Imara's rebuttal, Afghani himself stands firm as the sage and teacher who "has become an important and dear part of the heart of the Islamic Umma"5' and who even led Egypt's struggle for emancipation against the Ottoman Empire and the West. It is in the discussion about the nature of this struggle and Egypt's role in the Arab and Islamic world that the Afghani debate becomes most relevant to the identity question in which Egyptian intellectuals have been intensely involved for over a century. The intensity of the debate is understandable if one realizes the complexity of Egyptian self-awareness, a shifting amalgam of Pharaonic-Mediterranean, Arab, Muslim, and purely national ingredients. Two ever present components in this awareness that also figure in the Afghani controversy are (1) the historiographically sensitive, because ambivalent, Egyptian relationship with the Ottoman Empire, and (2) the cultural and religious axis that connects Egypt with the Arab world and Islam. The first involves the nature of the Egyptian resistance against Ottoman domination around the time of the 'Urabi revolt in the early 1880s, followed by the British occupation in 1882. It further concerns the problematic status of the late Ottoman Empire, which is widely seen as a despotic state yet at present enjoys something of a rehabilitation in "neo-salafi" circles as the last Islamic empire and the seat of the caliphate and a mighty military force that for a long time shielded the Arab lands from Western penetration.52(Today the questions posed are: was the Ottoman Empire an oppressive occupying power that stifled the Arab genius or did it function as a buffer between the West and the Muslim World?) The second component revolves around paradoxes of territorial, religious, and linguistic nationalism and the criteria of Egypt's incorporation into a wider entity; but above all it concerns the country's supposed uniqueness which either sets it apart from the Arab-Islamic fold or gives it a special place among Arabs and Muslims. 'Awad's Jamal al-Din al-Afghani does not perform the role assigned to him in the standard Egyptian account. 'Awad argues against a significant role for Afghani in either inciting Egypt to rebellion against its Ottoman suzerain or in strengthening Egypt's ties with the Arab and Muslim world. Afghani, 'Awad insists, was not really any more in favor of the 'Urabi revolt than Muhammad 'Abduh was. In fact, he was probably working with the Porte and Tawfiq Pasha against the Khedive Isma'il-and getting paid by the Turks and the French who were on his side in his opposition against the British. In addition, Afghani

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worked with the British during their campaign against the Khedive IsmaCil, or how else could they have allowed him to be elected president of the Egyptian Masonic Lodge Kawkab al-Sharq? The British only turned against him and had him expelled from Egypt under the pretext of his having propagated nihilism after he turned against them with the formation of the Nubar Pasha government.53 Finally, instead of Afghani's sparking the "Egypt for the Egyptians" movement as 'Anhuri, one of his biographers, has claimed, it was that movement that forced Afghani to downplay his connections with Tawfiq Pasha, Riyad Pasha, and the Porte.54CAwaddoes stress Afghani's active resistance against the West and notes that this resistance overshadowed every other motive he may have had. In fact, cAwad argues, Afghani was faced with a dilemma between Ottoman despotism and Western colonialism. He realized that combating the former would facilitate the latter and thus chose to fight colonialism, within the framework of Ottoman unity.55 Afghani's opposition to Ottoman despotism, 'Awad further notes, implied just as little preference for democracy or parliamentary rule as did his struggle for freedom from foreign domination. Afghani's concern with knowledge and education, 'Awad states, extended to his conception of rule and authority. The Babi and Shaikhi ideas of his youth explain Afghani's ideal of the Perfect Man (al-murshid al-kamil) who, as the benevolent despot (al-mustabidd al-Cadil), reigns in the virtuous city (al-madina al-fadila). Hence, Afghani's choice was not between despotism and republican democracy, but between ignorant and enlightened despotism.56 In his reply to cAwad's treatment of Afghani's role in Egypt, 'Imara concentrates on reaffirming Afghani's commitment to Egypt's liberation and his role in the reawakening of Egyptian consciousness. 'Imara dismisses CAwad'squestions about Jamal al-Din's sources of financial support as absurd, given Afghani's well-known ascetic life style, and reiterates Afghani's firm opposition to any foreign powers. He refuses to accept Afghani's membership in the Masonic Lodge as proof of his support for the British. But, above all, he denies the dilemma 'Awad claims Afghani faced between opposing Ottoman rule and resisting the West. Afghani, 'Imara insists, advocated independence, unity, and reform; he was as much concerned with warding off Western intrusion as with combating internal stultification, backwardness, and oppression.57 The most revealing moment in 'Imara's argument comes when he states that Afghani believed in the Ottoman Empire, not as the ultimate Islamic state, but as a buffer against the ultimate enemy, Western imperialism.58 Here 'Imara imputes to Afghani an opinion he himself has expressed on numerous occasions. 'Imara's revisionist view deviates from the conventional Arab position on Turkish rule as an unqualified disaster for the Arab world, and for Egypt in particular. This view is often advanced to explain why the Arab world, after centuries of glory and achievement, declined and failed to keep pace with postmedieval Europe. The more subtle revisionist view agrees that the rule of Mamluks and Ottomans stifled Arab creativity and rationality, but is careful not to cast the West in the role of liberator from this Turkish yoke. The Ottoman Empire may have been an obstacle in the way of Arab emancipation, and the cultural development of Egypt, the leader of the Arab world, may have been especially impaired; but this

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does not warrant the equation of Turkish rule with Western imperialism. After all, the Ottoman Empire performed an Islamic duty: it defended the Arab world against Western imperialism and it preserved the identity of the Umma.59Afghani is turned from a pan-Islamic believer in the Ottoman Empire into a precursor of pan-Arabism with 'Imara's wholly unsubstantiated claim that one of Afghani's aims was to Arabize the Ottoman Empire-and indeed the Turks, so that they might benefit from Arab achievements-so that, in turn, the Arabs might resume their leading role within the Umma. Here, too, Afghani anachronistically serves an ideological objective. Afghani's "Islamic League" (al-jamiCa al-islamiyya), CImarastates, called for Islamic unity but, unlike other movements, recognized Arab preeminence within Islam.60 Where 'Awad, as an opponent of Arabism, does not make a connection between Afghani and Arab or Egyptian particularity, 'Imara claims Afghani gave a special role to Arab civilization. Cautious to exclude the racial and ethnic elements singled out by opponents of Arabism to condemn the concept as well as to exclude Egypt from it, 'Imara emphasizes the cultural character of the Arab community's particularity.61To strengthen his point, he uses Afghani's linguistic argument that a community (umma, meaning any community) can only be distinguished by its language and that the Arab community, like any other, is marked by language before religion. Ignoring that this argument, rather than proving Afghani's belief in Arab prominence within Islam, supports the idea that, for Afghani, language was a more important means of identity than religion, cImara further claims that Afghani even emphasized the distinguished role of Egypt in the revival of Arab preeminence.62To support the latter thesis, 'Imara quotes Afghani in excerpts of praise for Egypt without discussing the more plausible explanation that this is in line with Afghani's habit, until he became a pan-Islamist in the 1880s, of awakening national pride, vis-a-vis the West, in the countries he visited. CImara,furthermore, ignores the fact that Afghani, like others in the 19th century, had no concept of Arabs as a nation. With the central role of Egypt thus established, 'Imara concludes by elaborating on the legacy left by Afghani's "Islamic League," a legacy whose essence is a revival based on the Islamic civilization and in which Islamic and national elements coalesce. The three protagonists of this revival presented by 'Imara are Ahmad 'Urabi, Mustafa Kamil, and Hasan al-Banna, three widely divergent figures whose communality does not go far beyond their central position in Egyptian history.
CONCLUSION

CImara's integration of Egyptian nationalism, Arab unity, and Islamic universalism by reference to Afghani's goals and principles reflects a conception of Islam that is centered in Arab lands, virtually excludes non-Arab Muslims, and has Cairo for its real capital. This conception only avoids an explicitly nationalist label by stripping any territorial emphasis on Egypt of all secular and ethnic implications. cImara's nationalism rejects the Pharaonic heritage, draws on a cultural mixture of Islam and Arabism, and ostensibly does not allow for

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Western secularist intrusions. Instead, it follows Afghani in his eclectic modernism and hails him as the first to seek to distinguish the useful from the harmful with regard to Western influence. CImara'sAfghani embodies the conviction of many contemporary Islamic activists that now, just as in the late 19th century, it is possible to borrow from the West only those elements that do not undermine one's own cultural tradition. If the ideological strand in 'Imara's defense of Afghani is easily identified, the greater plausibility of 'Awad's interpretation of Afghani should not obscure 'Awad's political preferences. 'Awad did follow recent Western Middle East scholarship in his interpretation of Afghani; this alone would have been enough for his critics to cast him as a traitor. These critics were furthermore correct in pointing to cAwad's underlying aim. 'Awad's religious minority status prevents him from attacking the "Islamic revival" in any explicit way; the study of a crucial historical figure like Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, however, enabled him to warn, in an indirect and perhaps more effective way, that a struggle against imperialism and oppression does not equal a quest for democracy and freedom, in either the past or the present. A further point that emerges from this historical polemic regards differences in scholarly traditions and, therefore, in premises, methodology, and presentation. 'Awad's references are often wanting and his conclusions tenuous, but his approach generally conforms to modern Western standards of critical historical analysis and argumentation. His narrative shows the self-assurance of the rational revisionist fighting obscurantism with Enlightenment tools. 'Imara's method, on the other hand, has its roots in a discursive tradition in which analogical and syllogistic reasoning are important and in which the authority of the original source is held to be preeminent, indeed, inviolable. 'Imara, in addition, writes from an apologetic position and is often reduced to calling his opponent's nationalist integrity into question. Yet, 'lmara, too, aspires to "modern"scholarship when he criticizes 'Awad and tries to counter the latter's arguments by advancing his own evidence. The result is an ambivalent work that aims to portray Afghani in his true historical dimensions, yet is marked by an ahistorical approach which reifies Afghani and refuses to consider him in his own context. 'Imara's Afghani is the incarnation of Muslim wisdom and resistance for all times and all places. He does not develop his views or show the influence of the places and societies he visits. Similarly, 'Imara, by not placing Afghani in his historical context, fails to consider that Jamal al-Din, regardless of his true motives, was progressive and revolutionary in the 19th-century context in large part because he was fascinated by Western technology and philosophy. The fact that today this would make him suspect does not in the least detract from his stature and importance. The problem, though, reaches beyond the mere conclusion that 'Imara does not conform to a conception of scholarship which is called modern and is therefore widely accepted. For 'Imara's insistence on the inviolability of the standard Afghani account in response to cAwad's critical attack on that account points to a painful dilemma in the historiography and, indeed, the collective consciousness of the Arab and Muslim community. Part of this dilemma con-

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cerns the question of how to criticize, analyze-in short, historicize-a corpus when that same corpus retains its status as a sacred text? Jamal al-Din alAfghani's case demonstrates the complexity of reconsidering a national figure in a community that has canonized that figure as an integral part of its cultural and religious heritage.63 Afghani is equally illustrative of the second part of this dilemma. He is a figure of mythical proportions who personifies a heritage in its quest for authenticity in opposition to an outside threat. Any revision of that image is likely to be seen as emanating from the outside force. We may call it ironic that Afghani himself has been shown to conform little to his reputation as the exemplary Muslim fighting unbelief and oppression alike. It should not come as a surprise, however, that many will look at these reinterpretations as either Orientalist distortions or treacherous collaborationist schemes to "undress" a crucial national figure in front of a hostile audience. The Afghani polemic thus illustrates how the influence of Western Middle East scholarship on the domestic Arab and Muslim intellectual discourse lends particular sensitivity to the continued discussion over the acceptance or rejection of methods of research and criticism associated with the West.
LOS ANGELES

NOTES Author's note: I would like to thank the participants in the 1987 summer seminar on Iran at UCLA and Ibrahim Karawan for their criticism and suggestions, and Juan Cole for providing literature. 1I use this generally accepted name, although it has been proven he was born in Iran. 2The most important of these reinterpretations are, in chronological order, Iraj Afshar and Asghar Mahdavi, Majmu'eh-ye asndd va maddrek-e chap nashodeh dar bdreh-ye Sayyed Jamal adDin mashhur beh AfghanT (Tehran, 1963); Elie Kedourie, Afghani and 'Abduh: An Essay on Religious Unbelief and Political Activism in Modern Islam (London, 1966); Homa Pakdaman, Djamal-ed- Din Assad Abadi dit Afghani (Paris, 1969); and Nikki R. Keddie, Sayyid Jamal ad-Din "al-Afghani":A Political Biography (Berkeley, 1972). 3Egypt is not the only Arab country in which reinterpretations of Afghani have provoked angry reactions. For an Iraqi attempt to reestablish the notion that Afghani was born in Afghanistan, on the basis that those who claim Iranian origins for him are by definition his detractors, see Muhsin CAbdal-Hamid, Jamdl al-DTnal-AfghanT,al-musallih al-muftard calayhi (Beirut, 1403/1983). 4The first author to mention the discrepancy between Afghani's own account of his origins and the true story was apparently the Iranian historian of the Constitutional Movement in Iran, Nazem al-Eslam Kermani, in his TdrTkh-e bTddrT-ye Irdniydn,2nd ed. (Tehran, 1945-46), pp. 60-61. 5For a perspective in line with the present regime's ideology, see Mortaza Motahhari, Nahiathddar sad sdleh-ye akhTr(Tehran, 1362/1983), pp. 14-20; idem, A Discourse on the Islamic ye EsldmT Republic (Tehran, 1405/1985), pp. 32-36. An official Islamic Republican view on Afghani can be found in Hojjat al-Eslam cAmid Zanjani, MabdnY-yefeqhT-ye qdnun-e asdsi-ye Jomhuir-ye EsldmT-vye Irdn (Tehran, 1362/1983), pp. 12-13. At the same time, material on Afghani continues to be published in the Islamic Republic in which his position and role is examined critically. See, for example, Kanim Mojtahedi, Sayyed Jamal al-Din Asaddbddi va tafakkor-e jadid (Tehran, 1363/ 1984). For a recent Iranian study of Afghani, see CAliAsghar Halabi, ZendegTva safarhd-ye Sayyed Jamal al-DTn AsaddbddT (Tehran, 2536/1977-1978).

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6An illustration of this is a series of stamps the Islamic Republic of Iran has issued in honor of "precursors of the Islamic movement" (pTshgdhdn-enahzat-e EsldmT), with, among others, Jamal ad-Din al-Afghani, Fazlollah Nuri, and Ayatollah Kashani. See P. Chelkowski, "Stamps of Blood," The American Philatelist 101, 6 (June 1987), 556-66. 7See Werner Ende, "Wer ist ein Glaubensheld, wer ist ein Ketzer?, Konkurrierende Geschichtsbilder in der modernen Literatur islamischer Lander," Die Welt des Islams, 23-24 (1984), 70-94. 8After the 1952 revolution in Egypt, the non-Egyptian background of Muhammad 'Ali's family was emphasized in order to stress the claim that with Nasser Egypt had its first authentically Egyptian government after 2,000 years of foreign domination. In the 1970s, however, Muhammad 'Ali's foreign origin was once again downplayed. He was now presented as the ruler who, like Nasser, contributed to Egypt's independence and whose national project was brought down by the imperialist West. 9For a discussion of Egyptian self-perceptions, see Shimon Shamir, ed., Self-Views in Historical Perspective in Egypt and Israel (Tel Aviv, 1981). '?See, for example, Ahmad Husayn, MawsCuattdrTkhMisr (Cairo, 1973), pp. III, 1042-43; Subya WahTda, FTusul al-mas9ala al-Misriyya (Cairo, n.d.), pp. 225 ff. For a more balanced account of Afghani's role, see Salah 'csa, al-Thawra al-'urdbiyya (Beirut, 1972), pp. 223 ff.; GhalT Shukri, al-Nahda wa al-suqt tfTal-fikr al-MisrTal-hadith, 2nd ed. (Beirut, 1978), pp. 164 ff. "The Muslim Brotherhood interpretation of Afghani may be found in numerous references in the magazines al-Da'wa, al-I'tisdm, and al-Mukhtdr al-isldmi until they were surpressed in September of 1981. Lack of access has prevented me from checking these publications since their reappearance in 1984. An Islamic leftist interpretation, which hails Afghani as an advocate of social justice and an Islamic Luther, may be found in Hasan Hanafi, ed., al- Yasadr al-isldmT(Cairo, 1981). 12See Israel Gershoni and James P. Jankowski, Egypt, Islam, and the Arabs: The Search for Egyptian Nationhood, 1900-1930 (New York, 1987). '3For some of these cultural and intellectual controversies and scandals, see Albert Hourani, Arabic Thought in the Liberal Age 1798-1939 (London, 1962); Donald Malcolm Reid, "Cairo University and the Orientalists," International Journal of Middle East Studies, 19, 1 (1987), 51-76. 14Theprominent Egyptian author Tawfiq al-Hakim argued, after the 1978 peace accord with Israel and Egypt's expulsion from the Arab camp, for Egyptian neutrality in the superpower conflict and a political and military withdrawal from Arab allegiance. For the important discussion that ensued, see Sa'd al-Din Ibrahim, ed., cUrubat Misr, Hiwar al-saba'cndt (Cairo, 1978). '5See Luwis 'Awad, "Bahth jari can Jamal al-DYn al-Afghani; al-Irani al-ghamid fT Misr," at-Tadamon, 1:1-1:22 (April 16-Sept. 10, 1983). 16Informationin "Gamal al-Din al-Irani," Revue de la presse egyptienne, 11 (Dec. 1983), 48. '7Al-Ahrdm, from August to October of 1983, published the comments of a series of critics under the title "al-Afghani. . . bayn al-haqiqa wa al-iftira." See, for example, Samih Karim, "al-Afghani wa taqarlr al-jawasis," al-Ahram, Aug. 29 and 30; Jabir Qamiha, "Qusuiral-bahth ... wa ghiyab al-minhaj," al-Ahram, Sept. 5; idem, "al-tazwir ... wa amanat al-kalima," al-Ahrdm, Sept. 6. SAl-Duktir Muhammad 'Imara, Jamdl al-DTnal-AfghanTal-muftard 'alayhi (Cairo, 1984). 9Luwis 'Awad, Tdrnkhal-fikr al-Misrf al-hadTthmin 'asr Ismd'Tl ild thawrat 1919. Al-Bahth althdnt. al-Fikr al-siydsi wa al-ijtimdi (Cairo, 1986), vol. II, pt. 1. 20See cAwad, "al-Asatir al-siyasiyya," al-Ahrdm, April 7, 1978. This article is part of the Tawfiq al-Hakim debate referred to earlier. Incidentally, 'Awad also took part in that debate and agreed with al-Hakim that Egypt is a separate and unique entity. Contrary to al-Hakim, however, 'Awad argued that Egypt was inevitably part of the Arab world in strategic and political terms, that the country's security could therefore only be ensured in a larger Arab framework, but that this fact did not imply the existence of an Arab nation or umma. 21See'Awad, "Misr tuwajihu mad. ha," al-Musawwar, Sept. 12, 1982. 'Awad contributes regularly to al-Musawwar. He mostly reports on Western culture and discusses literature and philosophy. 22'Awad, "Ma'na al-qawmiyya," al-Ahrdm, May 11, 1978. See also, Luwis 'Awad, The Literature of Ideas in Egypt, Pt. I (Atlanta, 1986). For a critique of 'Awad's ideas and theories, see Raja Naqqash, al-Inizaliyytun f Misr (Beirut, 1981). 23'Awad calls himself a 20th-century humanist (in the autobiographical part of his The Literature of Ideas in Egypt, pp. 210-25). A good overview of 'Awad's interpretation of the history of

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secularism and humanism in Egypt may be found in his "Qissat al-cilmaniyya fi Misr," al-Musawwar, Sept. 23 and 30, Oct. 7, 1983. 24See, for example, Farag Fuda's "secularist" response to the radical-Islamic treatise al-Farida al-ghd'iba; al-HaqTqa al-ghdaiba (Cairo, 1986), and the eloquent plea for the separation of religion and state by Husayn Ahmad Amin, Dalil al-Muslim al-hazTn,3rd ed. (Cairo, 1987). Recent examples of debates are "al-Tatarruf al-siyasi al-dinl fi Misr," al-Fikr ITal-dirdsdt wa al-ittijdhat, 2, 8 (Dec. 1985), 31-111; and the 1987 discussion series in the magazine al-Watan al-ArabT led by GhalT Shukri. It should be emphasized that what distinguishes the "secularist" intellectuals from others is less their concern about religious extremism and terrorism-which is shared by all-than their apprehension that a growing political role for religion threatens the country's pluralism and chances for democracy. 25For a discussion of the origin and present-day Egyptian interpretation of the term Cilmaniyya, see GhalT ShukrT, ed., "al-Salafiyya wa al-Cilmaniyya fT Misr," al-Watan al-ArabT, July 3, 1987, pp. 28-32. Following the definition of "'ilmaniyya" given in this debate, which comes closer to the French term "laicite" than to English "secularism," Muhammad 'Abduh was as much "'ilmanl" as those who today oppose the interference of religion in state affairs. 26The nature of the case makes it impossible to speak about the degree of representativeness of these intellectuals and their ideas. However, the fact that many write for widely circulated, albeit government-endorsed, dailies and weeklies like al-Ahrdm and al-Musawwar indicates that they are not marginal. 27The Afghani part of cAwad's 1986 book is dated January 1975. That copies of his study must have circulated prior to its publication is indicated by the reference to it in GhalTShukri, al-Nahda wa al-suqfit, p. 165. TdrTkh al-fikr, p. 9. 28CAwad, 29Muhammad clmara, ed., Jamdl al-Din al-Afghani: al-Acmdl al-kdmila, 2 vols., 2nd ed. (Beirut, 1979). See also cImara's Muslimin thuwwdr (Cairo, 1972), especially the chapter on Afghani, pp. 143-206. 30See,for example, 'Imara, NazrajadTda ild al-turdath (Beirut, 1974). 'Imara has continued to write on the relationship between Arabism and Islam and on the history of the 19th-century renewal movement as a model for the present. For some of his more recent writings, see "al-Islam wa alqawmiyya al-cArabiyya," Qa.dayd'Arabiyya, 7 (1980), 67-92; "al-Azhariyyun al-mujaddidun wa altaghrib," al-Hildal,91 (July 1983), 48-55; "Tamaddun IslamTam tahdith gharbl?" al-Hildl, 91 (Oct. 1983), 6-9; "al-'Uriiba wa al-lslam," al-Hildl, 91 (Nov. 1983), 32-36. 3'cImara, Muslimun thuwwdr, pp. 148-49. 32clmara argued that Islam and Arabism represent above all a culture and a civilization; most recently in an interview on the topic of the Islamic movement in al- Watan al-ArabT, July 24, 1987, pp. 28-33. His (vague) ideas about Islamic economics are to be found in an interview in al-Ahrdm al-Iqti.sdi, Jan. 4, 1988, pp. 32-40, 65. 33Fora recent classification and critical discussion of the different religious and secular intellectual trends, see Mahmud Amin cAlim, WacT wa al-wa'T al-zdaiff f al-fikr al- ArabTal-mu'dsir (Cairo, 1986), pp. 229-45. An excellent analysis is also Alain Roussillon, "Islam, islamisme et d6mocratie: recomposition du champ politique," Peuples mediterraneens, 41-42 (Oct. 1987-March 1988), 303-40. An inspired example of the kind of intellectual debate between representatives of the trends discussed here, made possible by the new political climate under Mubarak, appeared as "L'Etat: transformations et devenir," idem, pp. 27-66. 34c mara, Jamdl al- Dn, pp. 6 ff. 3Ibid., pp. 9-10. 36Ibid.,pp. 22 ff. 37See'Imara, Jamdl al-DTn, pp. 77; Samih Karim, "al-Afghani wa taqarir." was visiting professor at UCLA in 1974-1975. The Afghani part of the 1986 book version 38CAwad of his Afghani study is dated Los Angeles, January 1975. 39CImara uses the terms "spy reports" generally for the French and English diplomatic sources on Afghani. The usage of this term parallels that of "Zionists," which, though not explained, seems to refer to the secondary literature on Afghani. 40See Nikki F. Keddie, introduction to Sayyid Jamal ad-Din "al-Afghani."

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4'See CImara,Jamdl al-Dn .. al-aCmalal-kamila, 2nd ed., pp. 20-21, in which the author mentions the fact that Iranian and Western scholars have reinterpreted Afghani and subsequently tries to reestablish the Afghan origins of Afghani by maintaining that his family members bear non-Iranian or non-Shi'i sounding names and by claiming an overall lack of evidence for an Iranian background. All this does not appear in the introduction to the first edition of the collected works. See also 'Imara, Jamal al-Din, pp. 53-55; Samih Karim, "al-Afghani wa taqarir." 42An interesting apologetic variant is found in Muhammad Hasan, Jamal al-Din al-Afghani (Cairo, 1982). The author introduces his book by noting that Arab interest in Jamal al-Din has been lagging behind that of Western scholars who have dramatically reassessed his role. He subsequently proceeds to discuss Afghani's life and works along established uncritical lines. Tirikh al-fikr, pp. 25 ff. 43CAwad, 44Ibid.,pp. 159 ff. "Ibid., pp. 130-32. 46CImara, Jaml al-Din, pp. 53-55. 4Ibid., pp. 142-43. 48Ibid.,pp. 147-54. 9Ibid., pp. 127-29. 50lImara, as usual when dealing with non-Arabic sources, does not specify his references here, but presumably refers to Nikki Keddie and Hamid Algar's translation of the Refutation, in An Islamic Response to Imperialism: Political and Religious Writings of Sayyid Jamal ad-Din "al-Afghani" (Berkeley, 1968). While this translation was done from the Persian original, 'Imara evidently has looked only at the Arabic translation which is indeed longer due to the translator's additions to unclear passages on the basis of what he thought Jamal al-Din must have meant. On the other hand, the Arabic version contains no sections not found in the Persian original or its English translation (personal communication by Prof. Keddie). See also the introduction to the 1983 edition of An Islamic Response. 5icImara, Jamdl al-Din, p. 40. 52Forthis current revisionist view, which does not seem to be restricted to "Muslim revivalists," see Fathi Radwan, "al-Dawla al-cUthmaniyya, dawla muftara calayha," al-Hilal, 93 (Jan. 1986), 42-46; Salah al-cAqqad, "Yucaddu al-hukm al-'Uthmani masilan Cantakhalluf al-cArab?" al-Hildl, 93 (April 1986), 46-52. For a discussion of the Arab perception of the Ottoman Empire, see Ulrich Haarmann, "Ideology and History, Identity and Alterity: The Arab Image of the Turk from the cAbbasids to Modern Egypt," International Journal of Middle East Studies, 20 (1988), 175-96. 53CAwad, Tarikh al-fikr, pp. 18-19. It should be stressed that none of these allegations regarding Afghani in Egypt is supported by Keddie or Pakdaman. 54Ibid., pp. 94-95. Tawfiq Pasha succeeded Isma'il as Khedive of Egypt in 1879 and subsequently expelled Afghani from the country. Riyad Pasha was Minister of Education and Afghani's patron during the latter's stay in Egypt. "Ibid., p. 170. 56Ibid.,pp. 109-11. 57c Imara, Jamil al- Dn, p. 178. 5Ibid., pp. 176-77. 59Forthis view, see 'Imara, Jamdl al-Dmin, pp. 170 if.; idem, "al-Janfma al-cArabiyya." lmara has been criticized for this revisionist view of Mamluk and Turkish rule by Ahmad Baha al-Din in the latter's al-Ahrdm column "Yawmiyat" (Diary), in a series entitled "Difacan Can al-Islam," June 1019, 1987. 60Although c mara makes it sound as if this Islamic League was an institution or an organization, it never existed in reality. clmara alternates the term with Islamic project (mashrac IslamT), which presumably means the same. 6'See clmara, "al-'Uruba wa al-lslam," al-Hiill, 91 (Nov. 1983), 42-46. For CImara, Islam acquired nationalist traits as soon as it spread among the Arabs, who mixed Islam's universalism with the national reality. Henceforth, Islamic universality was expressed in a national framework. A tendency to exclude non-Arab Muslims from the Islamic heritage is similarly expressed in 'Imara's conception of turath. The usage of just Arab turath, Clmara states, would not sufficiently distinguish between pre-Islamic (jahiliyya) and Islamic times; just Islamic turath, on the other hand, has the

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drawback of incorporating non-Arab Muslims such as Indians and Indonesians. See lImara, "Turathuna:al-Nazra al-'cmma wa 1-minhajal-'ilml," Nazrajadida, p. 17. 62clmara, Janml al-Din, pp. 188-90. For a summary account of Afghani's belief that language constitutes a more essential ingredient of national identity than religion because of the relatively unchanging nature of language, see Mehdi Hendessi, trans., "Philosophie de l'union nationale basee sur la race et l'unite linguistique," Orient, 2, 6 (1958), 123-28. 63A recent critique of the traditional approach of much Arab historiography, its determinism, romanticism, and tendency to portray in moral, black and white terms can be found in Husayn Ahmad Amin, Dalal al-muslim al-hazmn,pp. 265-76. The differences in approach between the Arab "apologetic" and the "revisionist" schools are discussed in Emmanuel Sivan, "Arab Revisionist Historians: Historiography and the Second Nahda," idem, Interpretations of Islam: Past and Present (Princeton, 1985), pp. 45-72.

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