Sectarianism in Islam: Power, Tribalism, and Commercial Interests


Series: Religion and Society
BISAC: REL037000

Drawing on historical evidence and the Islamic instructions, Sectarianism in Islam: Power, Tribalism and Commercial Interests provides readers with the knowledge needed to recognize that sectarianism is and has long been an effective instrument for manipulation, endorsed and utilized by powerful players. The book is a careful reflection on and exploration of a subject that has fundamentally changed the course of action for various political and ambitious actors. The book challenges readers to place events in their historical and social contexts, without ignoring the existing political maneuvers. Furthermore, it underscores the power of the mind in the rise of Islamic civilization.

The author provides powerful arguments essential for understanding the interplay of various actors who have exploited sectarianism to enhance their positions and achieve their goals. Several evolutionary stages of sectarianism are identified. Though tribal conflicts took place before the inception of Islam, after the rise of Islam rivals projected themselves as religiously motivated. In recent years, two powerful players have espoused contradictory allegiances, which have further divided the Muslim world. The book, in fact, shows that the past and the present are alive and that they profoundly shape the memories of various communities today, and possibly for many decades to come.

Sectarianism in Islam: Power, Tribalism and Commercial Interests challenges you to let go of common myths, assumptions and uninformed beliefs that have been treated as given facts. The book addresses certain difficulties and setbacks that are pressing social and political actors to shoulder their responsibilities in the face of misconstruction and destructive strategies that have led to tragic events. Indeed, the book is not only a relevant work of scholarship, but it is also a practical call to enhance civility in conduct and circumvent pointless conflicts.
(Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Power Structure and Commercial Interests in Arabia before Islam

Chapter 2. Inception of Islam and the Changing Power Landscape

Chapter 3. The Struggle for Power and the Death of the Prophet

Chapter 4. Revitalized Tribal Network s and the Flourishing of Commerce

Chapter 5. Changing Alliances and Articulation of Sectarianism

Chapter 6. Thundering Storms: The Rise of Asian Dynasties

Chapter 7. Rivalry among Invading Turkish Tribes and Western Domination

Chapter 8. Today’s Sectarian Discourse

Chapter 9. Sectarianism: A Rationalization of the Illogical


“Abbas Ali is a world-renowned expert who has written several major contributions on Islamic Perspectives on Business and Management and on Islamic Business Ethics. Now he has turned his scholarly attention to the long-standing problem of the sectarianism that has damaged the unity of Islam and weakened its moral and political force. Drawing on historical scholarship and classic philosophical writings Abbas Ali has made an important contribution to an issue of the utmost significance for the global society.” – David Weir, Professor of Intercultural Management, York St John University, UK

“Dr. Abbas Ali a distinguished scholar of long standing, and one of the foremost experts on the intersection of Islam and western capitalism, has written a comprehensive call to understanding. Like many scholars, Dr. Ali has a deep respect for the great minds of the past. His historical research seeks to reveal the original form of “Islamic Thinking” as guide to human interaction. In many ways his effort resembles the quest by American constitutional scholars to discover the original thinking of the Founding Fathers. Efforts of this type places high demands on both the writer and readers. Original thinking isn’t easy to grasp, especially after it has been corroded by centuries of intentional obfuscation. Fortunately, cross-cultural bridge builders like Dr. Ali are available to help us.” – Paul Swiercz, Professor, George Washington University

“This superb treatise written by Professor Abbas Ali seeks to reveal the best of Islamic thinking that emanated out of the Golden Era of Islam. The book discusses and analyzes the intellectual contributions of Islamic philosophers and demonstrates how these precepts have contemporaneous relevance and practical applications in today’s world. Furthermore, this authoritative text has excellent discussions of the ethical, political, economic, and social issues surrounding the topic of sectarianism. It is must reading for scholars and policy makers.”- Douglas M. McCabe, Professor of Management, McDonough School of Business, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

“This is a very valuable addition to the literature on Sectarianism in Islam- a subject that has only been limitedly addressed by researchers. Abbas Ali provides a well researched careful account of how manipulative players have used sectarianism as an exploitative tool to further their biased agendas. A “must read” for those interested in getting an in-depth informative understanding of a contemporary issue that has propagated debilitating divisiveness in the Islamic world.” – Zahir A. Quraeshi, G.W. Haworth Chair of Global Business, Director, Global Business Center, Haworth College of Business, Western Michigan University

“In this era of terrorism and hatred towards the religion of Islam this book is a must read. The role of how sectarianism in Islam plays out in the political arena to sustain power, incite strife and warfare is presented crystal clear. Everyone who is concerned with what is going on in the world today needs to buy this book.” – Raymond A. K. Cox, Associate Dean, School of Business & Economics, Thompson Rivers University, Canada


Researchers, Students in Islam, politicians, and diplomats


Sectarianism, nature of conflicts in Islam, Tribalism, Power structure in Islam, Omer Ibn Al Khattab, Ali Ibi Abi Talib, Prophet Mohamed, Foreign Intervention

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