Thursday, July 08, 2004


I've been doing quite a bit of reading about Islamist thought as of late, mainly focusing on the mid 20th century Egyptian philosopher Sayyid Qutb. He is considered by many to be the brain of Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda. In fact, al-Qaeda number 2, Ayman al-Zawahiri served in the Muslim Brotherhood along with Qutb in the 1950's and 1960's. Qutb came into the political discourse with the publication of Paul Berman's Terror and Liberalism. In it, he discusses Qutb for a whole chapter, entitled "The Philosopher of Islamic Terror." It was published in NYT Magazine on 3/23/03 and is available online here. Sadly, due to extreme lack of money I have not yet had a chance to phurchase the book. But with my new job, I have a steady income and plan on buying it within the next few weeks.

Upon reading that article, I set out to find any and all analysises I could find on Qutb's books In the Shade of the Qur'an and Social Justice in Islam. I found Ideofact through Regnum Crucis, and Ideofact, indeed, has the most comprehensive analysis of Sayyid Qutb's work(here and here). You need to read it all.

And I just discovered this fantastic blog because of his very nice summary of Berman's book.