From political Islam to democrat Muslim: A case study of Rashid Ghannouchi’s influence on ABIM, IKRAM, AMANAH and DAP

Maszlee Malik


Rashid Ghannouchi has been known for his adherence to the idea of
Islamic Democracy, which accepted democracy and its values as part of Islamic
principles. For Muslims around the globe, Ghannouchi’s non-conventional
ideas are seen as something new and apt for the modern democratic age, in
particular his recent epistemological departure from conventional ‘Political
Islam’ to the paradigm of the ‘Democrat Muslim’. Ghannouchi’s thoughts have
been quoted by several Islamic organizations in Malaysia to legitimize their
departure from the conventional Political Islamic discourse towards a more
inclusive approach. Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (ABIM), Pertubuhan
Ikram Malaysia (IKRAM) and Parti Amanah Negara (AMANAH) are
examples of those who substantiated their departure from conventional,
legalistic Islamism discourse to the idea of Islamic democracy, freedom,
power-sharing and continuous dialogues and engagements with others through
Ghannouchi’s ideas. On the other hand, some leaders of the Democratic Action
Party (DAP), a local secular party, have also been courting Ghannouchi. This
study attempts to measure the influence of Rashid Ghannouchi’s thoughts on
the above mentioned organizations and parties and understand the motivations
underlying the influence.

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INTELLECTUAL DISCOURSE. Print ISSN: 0128-4878 - Online ISSN: 2289-5639

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