Workshop with Faisal Devji - "The Inheritance of ISIS"

Chair: Divya Dwivedi

Faisal Devji - The inheritance of ISIS (10.30 am - 11.30 am)


Comments by Shruti Kapila (11.45 am - 12 pm)

Open Discussion (12 pm - 1 pm)

VENUE: Senate Room (first floor, main Building, IIT Delhi)




While both scholarly and journalistic analyses of Muslim militancy see it emerging out of a longer history of Islam’s politicization, I want to argue that exactly the reverse is true, with much of the violence that characterizes contemporary terrorism deriving from the refusal of politics. The destruction of profane Muslim authority in colonial times was matched by efforts to reconceive Islam itself as a form of social self-management by means of divine law, one that reserved sovereignty for God alone. The problem of what came to be called Islamism, then, was how to produce a society without sovereignty. The inheritance of ISIS is one consequence of the failure of this struggle.

FAISAL DEVJI is Professor of Indian History, St Antony's College, Oxford University. He specializes in studies of Islam, globalization, violence and ethics. He has held faculty positions at the New School in New York, Yale University and the University of Chicago. He is a Fellow at New York University’s Institute of Public Knowledge and Yves Otramane Chair at the Graduate Institute in Geneva. He is the author of Muslim Zion: Pakistan as a Political Idea (2013), The Impossible India: Gandhi and the Temptation of Violence (2012), The Terrorist in Search of Humanity: Militant Islam and Global Politics (2009), Landscapes of the Jihad: Militancy, Morality, Modernity (2005).

Discussant: SHRUTI KAPILA, Associate Professor of Modern Indian History and Political Ideas, Cambridge University & Fellow Corpus Christi College.

Chair: DIVYA DWIVEDI, Assistant Professor, Humanities & Social Sciences, IIT Delhi