Leaving Medina

Michael Farquhar

in Circuits of Faith

Published by Stanford University Press

Published in print November 2016 | ISBN: 9780804798358
Published online May 2017 | e-ISBN: 9781503600270 | DOI:
Leaving Medina

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This chapter explores the role of the Islamic University of Medina’s non-Saudi students, as religious migrants, bearers of spiritual capital accumulated on its campus and mediators of its Wahhabi-influenced message. It considers their experiences in Medina and their trajectories after graduation. It argues that agency exercised by these students, as well as efforts by an array of religious authorities and lay actors around the world to contest their authority to speak in the name of Islam, have contributed to determining the ways in which the impact of the IUM project has played out in diverse locations. This suggests that, while Saudi religious and political elites may be able to exert religious influence abroad through the IUM, that influence does not necessarily constitute control.

Keywords: Religious migration; spiritual capital; objectification; Salafism; transnationalism

Chapter.  11658 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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