Between ‘tradition’ and movement: The emergence of Turkey’s Anti-Capitalist Muslims in the age of protest

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This article discusses the emergence of the “Anti-Capitalist Muslims” (ACMs) movement as the conjunction of critical Muslim politics and grassroots activism in Istanbul, Turkey. It explores the way in which Islam has been reconstituted in Turkish politics, in contrast to both fundamentalism and the government’s neoliberal conservatism. The article draws upon Talal Asad’s definition of Islam as a ‘tradition’ that attempts to achieve coherent narratives in a form which considers and enters into a dialogue with the present context, especially with contemporary social movements. It is argued that, through a dialogue between Islam and anti-capitalist social movements, the ACMs constructed an alternative Islamic tradition, focused especially on emancipation, equality and challenging structures of domination. Yet this alternative tradition proved unable to sustain itself due to the presence of a number of ongoing ridigities, which it is suggested might be addressed in future attempts to construct an anti-capitalist form of Islam.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)472-488
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2019

ID: 174823415