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Andrew W. H. Ashdown, Christian-Muslim Relations in Syria: Historic and Contemporary Religious Dynamics in a Changing Context

Andrew W. H. Ashdown, Christian-Muslim Relations in Syria: Historic and Contemporary Religious... Book Reviews 419 The present disastrous political and economic decline of Lebanon is the product of Lebanon’s confessional system (a creation of the Ottoman millet system and Western imperialism), corruption, the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, the civil war of 1975–90, interference from other countries (including Syria, Israel and Iran) which have fought their proxy wars on the soil of Lebanon, tensions between Sunnis and Shi’ites (supported by Iran), and the influx of more than a million and a half Syrian refugees. Lebanese Christians of all denominations certainly need to develop more open and positive attitudes towards their Muslim neighbours. But it is hard to see how abandoning ‘self-otherizing’ and having better relationships with Muslims can address the complex and deep-seated problems in the country. Awad’s challenging volume is offered as an ‘attempt at renewal and reforming’ (27) and calls for ‘new forms of Christian witness … new options, new ways, towards healing, reform and revival’ (xii). If readers are not entirely convinced by his diagnosis of the problems facing Protestant Christians in Syria and Lebanon, others (both from within the context and outside) need to engage with his argument and come forward with other diagnoses and other solutions. Colin Chapman Formerly http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Studies in World Christianity Edinburgh University Press

Andrew W. H. Ashdown, Christian-Muslim Relations in Syria: Historic and Contemporary Religious Dynamics in a Changing Context

Studies in World Christianity , Volume 28 (3): 4 – Nov 1, 2022

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
1354-9901
eISSN
1750-0230
DOI
10.3366/swc.2022.0407
Publisher site
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Abstract

Book Reviews 419 The present disastrous political and economic decline of Lebanon is the product of Lebanon’s confessional system (a creation of the Ottoman millet system and Western imperialism), corruption, the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, the civil war of 1975–90, interference from other countries (including Syria, Israel and Iran) which have fought their proxy wars on the soil of Lebanon, tensions between Sunnis and Shi’ites (supported by Iran), and the influx of more than a million and a half Syrian refugees. Lebanese Christians of all denominations certainly need to develop more open and positive attitudes towards their Muslim neighbours. But it is hard to see how abandoning ‘self-otherizing’ and having better relationships with Muslims can address the complex and deep-seated problems in the country. Awad’s challenging volume is offered as an ‘attempt at renewal and reforming’ (27) and calls for ‘new forms of Christian witness … new options, new ways, towards healing, reform and revival’ (xii). If readers are not entirely convinced by his diagnosis of the problems facing Protestant Christians in Syria and Lebanon, others (both from within the context and outside) need to engage with his argument and come forward with other diagnoses and other solutions. Colin Chapman Formerly

Journal

Studies in World ChristianityEdinburgh University Press

Published: Nov 1, 2022

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