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The History in Procession: Shiʿite Identity Formation through Frames of Arbaʿyin Pilgrimage Narrative

The History in Procession: Shiʿite Identity Formation through Frames of Arbaʿyin Pilgrimage... This article investigates emerging patterns of pilgrimage in the context of Shiʿite Islam and studies the case of Arbaʿyin based on two weeks of participatory observation, walking from the al-Faw peninsula in the far south of Iraq to the city of Karbalâ. I identify three narratives in this pilgrimage—tribal, ideological and orthodox—and discuss their commonalities and differentials. The maʿāzīb system of the tribal narrative is the core of the comparison, yet each narrative is interrelated with the others through the central themes of war, political Islam and religious seminaries. In the last section, I explore recent transformations of these themes as well as the pilgrims’ configuration. The tribal narrative of Arbaʿyin presents itself as a rival to the ideological narrative pilgrimage. Although this narrative is based on the social structure of a tribal system, it struggles with new transformations and challenges in form and content. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Anthropology of the Middle East Berghahn Books

The History in Procession: Shiʿite Identity Formation through Frames of Arbaʿyin Pilgrimage Narrative

Anthropology of the Middle East , Volume 17 (2) – Dec 1, 2022
21 pages

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Publisher
Berghahn Books
Copyright
© 2022 Berghahn Books
ISSN
1746-0719
eISSN
1746-0727
DOI
10.3167/ame.2022.170207
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article investigates emerging patterns of pilgrimage in the context of Shiʿite Islam and studies the case of Arbaʿyin based on two weeks of participatory observation, walking from the al-Faw peninsula in the far south of Iraq to the city of Karbalâ. I identify three narratives in this pilgrimage—tribal, ideological and orthodox—and discuss their commonalities and differentials. The maʿāzīb system of the tribal narrative is the core of the comparison, yet each narrative is interrelated with the others through the central themes of war, political Islam and religious seminaries. In the last section, I explore recent transformations of these themes as well as the pilgrims’ configuration. The tribal narrative of Arbaʿyin presents itself as a rival to the ideological narrative pilgrimage. Although this narrative is based on the social structure of a tribal system, it struggles with new transformations and challenges in form and content.

Journal

Anthropology of the Middle EastBerghahn Books

Published: Dec 1, 2022

Keywords: Arbaʿyin pilgrimage; ideological narrative; maʿāzīb system; tribal narrative

References