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date: 24 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the main trends of Islamic theological thought from the late nineteenth century to the present times, tracing developments in various Arab countries, in Turkey, Iran and India, Central Asia and Indonesia. It begins by tackling the question of the relation between indigenous roots and modern Western stimuli, tradition and innovation in Islamic theology during this period. Subsequently the author discussed the innovative trends. An overview of the theological ideas of the pioneers of Islamic modernism, the Indian Sayyid Ahmad Khan and the Egyptian Muḥammad ʿAbduh, is given, followed by an analysis of the views of modernist theological thinkers of the early twentieth century. Next the theology of the Indian philosopher and poet Muhammad Iqbal, an eminent example of theological modernism between the two world wars, is addressed. Another section deals with new hermeneutical and epistemological approaches to the Qurʾānic revelation. Finally the development of the interest in a new kind of philosophy-based kalām is delineated from their beginnings with Sayyid Ahmad Khan up to their present-day Iranian, Turkish and Arab protagonists.

Keywords: Islam, theology, modernism, reason, science, materialism, atheism, hermeneutics, epistemology, New kalām

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