Accepted Paper:

Consumption and the Islamic revival in Egypt  

Author:

Samuli Schielke (Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO))

Paper short abstract:

Looking at the ways consumption informs and transforms the significance of religious objects and practices, this paper discusses the contradictory effects of the popularisation of the Islamic revivalist piety movement.

Paper long abstract:

Looking at the ways consumption informs and transforms the significance of religious objects and practices, this paper discusses the contradictory effects of the popularisation of a revivalist piety movement that promotes an ideology of comprehensive pious discipline but in everyday practice becomes embedded in precisely the kind of banality and ambiguity that they originally aim to overcome. Rather than class and other hierarchies in the field of religion, this presentation looks at the issue of popularity through the category of the everyday, the necessarily pragmatic and ambiguous manoeuvering people undertake in their lives as opposed to religious ideologies that on the level of discourse proclaim a coherence and unity they cannot maintain when appropriated by large segments of people with often complex and contradictory expectations towards religiosity.

Panel W008
What makes popular piety popular?