TITLE

Reflections on Islamisation in Bengal

AUTHOR(S)
Chowdhury, Abdul Momin
PUB. DATE
January 2011
SOURCE
Bangladesh e-Journal of Sociology;2011, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p45
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The presence of a very large population of Muslims in present-day Bangladesh and Indian West Bengal is remarkable. It is a region far from the Arabian 'homeland' of the Muslim tradition and is separated by nearly a thousand miles from the other large concentration of Muslims in South Asia, namely Pakistan. Various explanations have been offered, some untenable (e.g., biological descent from prolific incoming dominant groups), some plausible but partial (e.g., conversion by Sufi saints, recruitment of local inhabitants for rice cultivation by Muslim entrepreneurs). The socio-religious factor focused on in this essay is the underlying tolerant and adaptive character of the collective 'personality' of the Bengali people, many of them influenced by Buddhism. Disturbed by the twelfth-century Sena efforts to impose rigidly caste-discriminating Brahmanical orthodoxy, many, especially in northern and eastern Bengal were attracted to the more egalitarian and accommodating Islamic way of life. INSET: 45.
ACCESSION #
60612754

 

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