Kersten, “A History of Islam in Indonesia”

In January, Edinburgh University Press will release A History of Islam in Indonesia: Unity in Diversity by Carool Kersten (King’s College, London). The publisher’s description follows:

a-history-of-islam-in-indonesiaExplores the history of Islam in the largest Muslim nation state in the world

Located on the eastern periphery of the historical Muslim world, as a political entity Indonesia is barely a century old. Yet with close to a quarter of a billion followers of Islam it is now the largest and most populous Muslim country in the world. As the greatest political power in Southeast Asia, and a growing player on the world scene, Indonesia presents itself as a bridge country between Asia, the wider Muslim world and the West.

In this survey Carool Kersten presents the Islamisation of Indonesia from the first evidence of the acceptance of Islam by indigenous peoples in the late thirteenth century until the present day. He provides comprehensive insight into the different roles played by Islam in Indonesia throughout history, including the importance of Indian Ocean networks for connecting Indonesians with the wider Islamic world, the religion’s role as a means of resistance and tool for nation building, and postcolonial attempts to forge an ‘Indonesian Islam’.

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