2019

 Social Mobilisation in Post-Industrial China The Case of Rural Urbanisation

Jia Gao and Yuanyuan Su. Social Mobilisation in Post-Industrial China The Case of Rural Urbanisation Authored Research Books. Edward Elgar Publishing, 2019.

In recent years China has experienced intense economic development. Previously a rapidly urbanising industrial economy, the country has become a post-industrial economy with a service sector that accounts for almost half the nation’s GDP. This transformation has created many socio-political changes, but key among them is social mobilisation. This book provides a full and systematic analysis of social mobilisation in China, and how its use as part of state capacity has evolved.

The first book on the topic written in English in recent decades, Social Mobilisation in Post-Industrial China provides readers with a thorough analysis covering all vertical administrative levels, as well as considering new participants. Bringing together interdisciplinary analyses of the current uses of social mobilisation in China, this book draws on empirically rich original research. It presents a clear picture of how boyi (‘strategic game-playing’) is acted out at different levels of society and within different sectors, and the social dynamics at work.

Contemporary Approaches to the Qurʾan and its Interpretation in Iran

Ali Akbar and Abdullah Saeed. Contemporary Approaches to the Qur’an and its Interpretation in Iran. Routledge, 2019.

This book sets out how contemporary Iranian scholars have approached the Qur’an during recent decades. It particularly aims to explore the contributions of scholars that have emerged in the post 1979-revolution era, outlining their primary interpretive methods and foundational theories regarding the reading of the Qur’an.

Examining issues such as the status of women, democracy, freedom of religion and human rights, this book analyses the theoretical contributions of several Iranian scholars, some of which are new to the English-speaking academy. The hermeneutical approaches of figures such Abdolkarim Soroush, Muhammad Mojtahed Shabestari, Mohsen Kadivar, Hasan Yousefi-Eshkevari, Abolqasem Fanaie and Mostafa Malekian are presented and then analysed to demonstrate how a contextualist approach to the Qu’ran has been formed in response to the influence of Western Orientalism. The effect of this approach to the Qu’ran is then shown to have wide-ranging effects on Iranian society.

This study reveals Qu’ranic thought that has been largely overlooked by the West. It will, therefore. Be of great use to academics in Religious, Islamic and Qur’anic studies as well as those studying the culture of Iran and the Middle East more generally.