Da'wa: A Global History of Islamic Missionary Thought and Practice
Paperback, 320 pages
In this engaging study, Matthew J. Kuiper tells the fascinating story of how Islam became a world religion and cultural phenomenon of immense scale, astonishing diversity and global impact. His starting point is the dramatic upsurge in Islamic missionary activism and widespread Muslim recovery of the classical concept of da‘wa (‘inviting’ to Islam, or Islamic mission) in recent times.
Going back to Islam’s origins, Kuiper then carefully chronicles 14 centuries of history, from the 7th-century da‘wa of the Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad to diverse da‘wa initiatives in today’s global religious marketplaces. Paying attention to changing contexts, and to themes like the interplay between the religious and the political, Islamic relations with other religions, and the transformations of modernity, he develops a nuanced and original portrait of the past, present and future of Islamic missionary thought and practice.
Part I: The pre-modern missionary history of Islam
1. The first invitation to Islam: Da'wa in the Qur'an
2. The best inviter: Da'wa in prophetic sira and Hadith
3. Da'wa after the Prophet, circa 632-1100 CE
4. Da'wa in medieval and early modern Islamic history, circa 1100-1700 CE
Part II: The modern missionary history of Islam
Introduction to Part II
5. Contextualising modern da'wa, eighteenth to twentieth centuries
6. The first phase of modern da'wa, circa 1850-1950: a survey
7. The second phase of modern da'wa, circa 1950-2020: a survey
Epilogue: COVID-19 and da'wa