Muslim Civilisations Abstracts (MCA)

Phase I

The first phase of the Muslim Civilisations Abstracts (MCA) is a substantial and comprehensive annotated bibliography of modern encyclopaedias about, and from, the Muslim world. These have been produced both by Muslims and non-Muslims, with different approaches to the organisation of knowledge and understanding of Muslim beliefs, civilisations and societies. It seems important that there should be a mutual appreciation both of these differences and of the extensive and systematic work that has been done in many countries to construct organised reference works and databases encompassing cumulated research.

Phase II

The MCA has launched the second stage of its project and requires the assistance of scholars to write abstracts on academic books. The MCA project team can provide more information on abstract guidelines when requested. The abstracts, written by expert scholars will be provided in nine languages: English, Arabic, Bengali, French, Malay/Indonesian, Persian, Russian, Turkish and Urdu.

The themes for the second stage of the project are as follows:

Knowledge Construction

• Surveys of the founding moments in Islam, ie major historical moments in Islam and how they have been received, perceived and interpreted in Muslim contexts throughout history and today.

Social and Cultural Change

• Issues of normativity: ethics and law: Usul al-Fiqh/Usul al-Din; Ijtihad (jurisprudence).

Societies and Modernities

• Cities as built environments (architecture, urban infrastructure)
• Cities as lived environments (urban social life and culture)

Books written on these subjects can be in any language, but must have been published in the Muslim world, which includes Bosnia, Kosovo and Albania. Books published in Russia, China and India are welcomed, but the topic must focus on Muslim civilisations.

The MCA will continue its first stage of abstracting encyclopaedias in tandem with the new themes, thus abstracts on encyclopedias will continue to be welcomed. Unlike the publications for the new themes, the encyclopedia’s place of publication can be anywhere in the world.

MCA is a project of the Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations at Aga Khan University.