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Articles on Blasphemy

Displaying 1 - 20 of 27 articles

People gather at a vigil pray and observe a moment of silence after an attack on author Salman Rushdie on Aug. 12, 2022, in Chautauqua, New York. AP Photo/Joshua Goodman

What is a fatwa? A religious studies professor explains

The attack on Salman Rushdie promptly led to speculation on whether the attacker had been influenced by the 1989 fatwa against the author. A scholar explains what a fatwa is, and isn’t.
Supporters of a Pakistani religious group burn an effigy depicting the former spokeswoman of India’s ruling party, Nupur Sharma, during a demonstration in Karachi, Pakistan. AP Photo/Fareed Khan

Why Muslim countries are quick at condemning defamation – but often ignore rights violations against Muslim minorities

A scholar of Islam writes about how widespread authoritarianism in the Muslim world shapes governments’ foreign policy toward Muslim minorities abroad.
Members of a civil society group participate in a candlelight vigil to pay tribute to the Sri Lankan citizen Priyantha Kumara, who was lynched by a Muslim mob in Pakistan. AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary

Understanding the history and politics behind Pakistan’s blasphemy laws

A scholar of Islam explains how Muslim religious leaders, starting around the year 1050, worked with political rulers to challenge what they considered to be sacrilegious influence on society.
Pakistani Islamists march to protest the Supreme Court lenient treatment of Asia Bibi, a Christian Pakistani woman accused of blasphemy, in Karachi, Feb. 1, 2019. ASIF HASSAN/AFP via Getty Images

Execution for a Facebook post? Why blasphemy is a capital offense in some Muslim countries

Pakistan, Iran and Saudi Arabia all punish blasphemy harshly – even with death. Such laws have political as well as religious motives, says a scholar on Islamism: They’re a tool for crushing dissent.
In this 2013 photo, Bangladeshi mourners carry the coffin containing the body of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider for funeral. AP Photo/Pavel Rahman, File

Conservative Islamic views are gaining ground in secular Bangladesh and curbing freedom of expression

In recent years Bangladesh has seen an increase in attacks on religious minorities. A scholar explains how certain extreme views on how Islam is to be followed are taking center stage in the country.
Pakistani religious groups protest against a Supreme Court decision that acquitted Asia Bibi, who was accused of blasphemy, in Islamabad, Pakistan. AP Photo/B.K. Bangash

Blasphemy law is repealed in Ireland, enforced in Pakistan – and a problem in many Christian and Muslim countries

There has been outrage over the release of a Christian woman accused of blasphemy in Pakistan. An expert explains how blasphemy laws are hardly obsolete throughout the West.
The crime of blasphemy is about protecting God and Christian doctrine from scurrilous commentary, and Christians from offence. Shutterstock

Blasphemy is still a crime in Australia – and it shouldn’t be

Laws against blasphemy privilege the feelings of Christians over other religious people, and have no place in a modern, inclusive society.
There is no dominant Islamist group in Indonesia that represents a coherent Islamic community. Reuters/Beawiharta

Should we worry about Islamism in Indonesia?

There are elements of intolerance and racism in Indonesia. But that does not necessarily mean that an organised Islamic political movement is on the rise.

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