Kathleen Collins is an Associate Professor of Political Science and an Affiliate Faculty of Islamic Studies at the University of Minnesota. Her primary scope covers Central Asian politics, Russian and Soviet history and politics, Afghanistan’s wars, political Islam, Islam and democracy, and religion and politics.
Collins’s previous book, Clan Politics and Regime Transition in Central Asia (2006), was rewarded as the best book in social science by the International Central Eurasian Studies Society. In her new book Politicizing Islam in Central Asia From the Russian Revolution to the Afghan and Syrian Jihads, the author provides an extensive overlook of the Islamist movements in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan by first examining the politicisation of Islam as such during the Soviet era, which gave ground to the mobilisation of the Islam and emergence of Islamism in the region.
The research is based on a strong source basis and a wide range of oral histories, interviews with religious leaders, Islamist movement activists and regular citizens of the examined states, providing a comprehensive understanding of the region and the roots of its issues. The book analyses the Islamist movements and parties in the studied countries by focusing on their specificities which gives a good overview of the issue within the broader region of Central Asia.
Sándor Seremet - The author is a researcher at Eurasia Center