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Internet sites used in
Following Muhammad:
Rethinking Islam in the Contemporary World
by Carl W. Ernst
(University of North Carolina Press, 2003).

An online version of the Preface is available here.
This web page contains updated links to Internet sources cited in this book, organized by the themes listed below. For a broader range of online sources on Islam, see Internet Resources for the Study of Islam and Resources for Islamic Studies.

On Using the Internet
Colonialism and anti-Islamic attitudes
Islamic Law
Islamic Art
Shi`i Islam
Philosophy, Science, Ethics, Politics
Islamic Culture and Contemporary Issues

On Using the Internet

See the useful remarks by Robert Harris, "Evaluating Internet Research Sources"

Colonialism and anti-Islamic attitudes

Kipling's poem "White Man's Burden," with some comment on the context of the Spanish-American war, may be seen at's_burden.

Materials on Omar ibn Sayyid (d. 1864) and his Arabic autobiography (written in Bladen County, NC), may be seen at

The full text of Macaulay's Minute on Education, recommending education in English instead of the classical languages of India, is available at

A classic Christian missionary text attacking Muhammad is William Muir, The life of Mahomet and history of Islam to the era of the Hegira (4 vols., London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1858), has been made available on a Christian anti-Muslim web site

A modern critique of the Qur'an is found in Toby Lester, "What Is the Koran?"The Atlantic Monthly (January 1999); an online version is available at

Another recent unfavorable treatment of the Qur'an is given in Kenneth L. Woodward, “In the Beginning, There Were the Holy Books,” Newsweek (Feb. 11, 2002); the article is available online at

Review of Bernard Lewis' "What Went Wrong: Western Impact and Middle Eastern Response," by Juan Cole, Global Dialogue, 27 January 2003. See also "What Is Wrong with What Went Wrong?" by Adam Sabra of Western Michigan University, in Middle East Report Online.


The Vatican II “Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions” is available on line at

Justice Arthur Goldberg’s distinction between “teaching religion” and “teaching about religion,” in Schempp (1963), quoted in Charles C. Haynes et al., Finding Common Ground: A First Amendment Guide to Religion and Public Education (3rd ed., Nashville, TN: First Amendment Center, 1998), p. 4.8 (available online at

For a perceptive and thoughtful discussion of problems of defining religious membership and categories of religion, see the Frequently Asked Questions section of the web site

On the problem of the commodification of religion and its definition by the state as intellectual property, see "Islam and Fundamental Rights in Pakistan: The case of Zaheer-ud-din v. The State and its impact on the fundamental right to freedom of religion," by Martin Lau (available online at, as well as the Mecca-Cola web site (

Islamic Law

Chibli Mallat, "The Middle East in the 21st Century: An agenda for reform," lecture delivered at the School of Oriental and African Studies, 22 October 1996 (available online at

See the Islamic Family Law website (, maintained by Prof. Abdullah An-Na'im, which contains extensive documentation about the status of Islamic law and its implementation in different countries around the world. His work on The Future of Shari`a is another important contribution.

See also the film “Divorce Iranian Style,” directed by Kim Longinotto and Ziba Mir-Hosseini, which describes how women negotiate their way through the Iranian judicial system (available from Women Make Movies).

Islamic Art

For a list of basic reference works on Islamic art and links to major museum collections, see the Islamic Art and Architecture web page at the Sloane Art Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (

For extensive visual and textual resources on Islamic architecture, see the ArchNet web site at the MIT School of Architecture and Planning ( 

For contemporary examples of Islamic architectural ornamentation, see

The penmanship of Rasheed Butt, who contributed the calligraphic epigraphs for Following Muhammad, is available on his web site. The text of the Hilya (hilyat al-nabi, "adornment of the Prophet,") is available here.
See "Making the Double Hilye," by contemporary calligrapher Mohamed Zakariya with a slide show of the process.

On the meditative aspect of Persian calligraphy, Carl W. Ernst, "The Spirit of Islamic Calligraphy: Baba Shah Isfahani's Adab al-mashq," Journal of the American Oriental Society 112 (1992), pp. 279-86.

For a brief overview, see Mamoun Sakkal, “The Art of Arabic Calligraphy” (

The Library of Congress has a good page on Arabic, Persian, and Ottoman calligraphy.

A wonderful recent treatment of Orientalist Art is provided by Holly Edwards, Noble Dreams, Wicked Pleasures: Orientalism in America, 1870-1930 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.

Striking pictures of the shrines at Medina before and after the 1925 demolition may be seen at

Shi`i Islam

For examples of contemporary Shi`i biographies of Muhammad, see Mohammad Baqir as-Sadr, The Revealer, The Messenger, The Message, trans. Mahmoud M. Ayoub (Tehran: World Organization for Islamic Services, 1980/1400),; Sayyid Mujtaba Musavi Lari, Seal of the Prophets and His Message: Lessons on Islamic Doctrine, trans. Hamid Algar (Potomac, MD: Islamic Education Center, n.d.),

For a detailed Shi`i justification of the use of the clay pillow from Kerbela, see

For a biography of Zaynab, see M. H. Bilgrami, The Victory of Truth: The Life of Zaynab bint ‘Ali (Karachi: Zahra Publications Pakistan, 1986); an online version is available at

For comprehensive information on the Isma`ili tradition, see the web site of the Institute of Isma`ili Studies (

For information on the Dawoodi Bohras, see

An extensive online collection of early Shi`i authoritative texts and multimedia resources has been assembled by the Ahlul Bayt Digital Islam Library Project.

The office of Iran's supreme leader, Ayatullah Khamenei, has an official web site.


A useful website with the Arabic text and audio recordings of Qur’anic recitation is available at

See also Resources for the Study of the Qur'an.

Philosophy, Science, Ethics, Politics

For a web site with detailed information on Islamic philosophy, see

For an online version of the Constitution of Iran, see

For Internet resources on liberal Islam, see the extensive web site developed by Charles Kurzman:

A thoughtful survey of Islamic ethics is provided by Azim Nanji, “Islamic Ethics,” in A Companion to Ethics, ed. Peter Singer (Oxford: Blackwells, 1991), pp 106 – 118.

For a website devoted to the thought of the philosopher Abdul-Karim Soroush, see

A stimulating and erudite re-evaluation of the history of science is given by George Saliba, "Whose Science is Arabic Science in Renaissance Europe?” available online at

A critical perspective on scientific studies in early modern Muslim countries can be found in Mohamad Tavakoli-Targhi, Refashioning Iran: Orientalism, Occidentalism, and Historiography (New York: Palgrave, 2001); chapter 1 is available online at

Islamic Culture and Contemporary Issues

The "Passport to Paradise" exhibit of Mouride art at UCLA is documented at

For a documentary on images of Middle Eastern women in American films, see “Hollywood Harems,” produced and written by Tania Kamal-Eldin (Women Make Movies, 1999.

For an insightful discussion of  Wahhabi iconoclasm directed at both Muslim and non-Muslim art, see Michael A. Sells, "Erasing Culture: Wahhabism, Buddhism, Balkan Mosques" (

For a list of suggested novels from Muslim majority countries, see

The contours of Islam on the Internet are sketched by Gary R. Bunt, Virtually Islamic: Computer-Mediated Communication and Cyber Islamic Environments (University of Wales Press, 2000);

Last modified June 19, 2008.