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God and Juggernaut
Iran’s Intellectual Encounter with Modernity

Farzin Vahdat

Cloth $35.95L    |   0-8156-2922-2    |   2001

Paper $19.95s    |   0-8156-2947-8    |   2001

Analyzes Iran’s intellectual encounter with modernity—from the mid-nineteenth century until now—by drawing on insights gleaned from Critical Theory.

""Vahdat’s work provides the very kind of summary of Critical Theory and its applicability to a non-Western society that teachers like myself have been searching for since the late 1970s."
dash Eric Hooglund, editor of Critique

Farzin Vahdat has written a trenchant analysis of the intellectual discourse of modernity in Iran. Although there have been several recent studies about Iranian intellectuals, this volume is unique in that it focuses almost entirely on intellectual discourse among the clergy.

Vahdat first provides us with a solid foundation for understanding the key Critical Theory concept of subjectivity—especially as expounded in the writings of Jurgen Habermas. Then, he successfully shows how one Western philosophical approach does have universal applicability by demonstrating the concern of Iranian theorists such as Shariati, Motahhari, Khomeini, and Sorush with human subjectivity.

By engaging the major theoretical discourses of modernity, the author attempts for the first time in a non-Western context to address some of the central theoretical issues involved in modernity and Iran’s experience of these issues. As such, this study can contribute to a profound understanding of modernity and its development in a Middle Eastern context. This book is an important addition to the growing body of work in Global Studies and Critical Theory as well as on contemporary Iran.

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Farzin Vahdat’s articles have appeared in Critique, Journal of Iranian Research and Analysis, Scandinavian Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, and International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies.

6 x 9, 256 pages

God and Juggernaut

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