Publisher description for Guardians of Shi'ism : sacred authority and transnational family networks / Elvire Corboz.


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A study of transnational Shi'ism that explains the constitution of clerical leadership patterns across borders

What is the significance of transnationalism to Shi`i Islam? And how is clerical authority shaped across borders? Based on a political sociology of two families of religious scholars, al-Hakim and al-Khu'i, Elvire Corboz explains the internal workings of transnational leadership patterns in Shi`ism for the first time.

Corboz compares the multifaceted roles played by Shi`i clerics in contemporary affairs with selective narratives about the traditional system of religious authority (the marja`iyya), political organisations, and international charities. Whether informal or institutionalised, their authority networks are in constant negotiation between communities and states in Iraq, Iran, other Middle Eastern countries, the Indian sub-continent South-East Asia, and the West. This multi-sited approach clarifies the local and transnational dynamics that underpin clerical authority.


Library of Congress subject headings for this publication:
Shiah -- Sociological aspects.