Political Thought in Contemporary Shi‘a Islam

Muhammad Mahdi Shams al-Din

  • Farah W. Kawtharani

Part of the Middle East Today book series (MIET)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Farah W. Kawtharani
    Pages 1-29
  3. Farah W. Kawtharani
    Pages 155-197
  4. Farah W. Kawtharani
    Pages 199-221
  5. Farah W. Kawtharani
    Pages 223-227
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 229-241

About this book


This book offers an intellectual history of one of the leading Shi’i thinkers and religious leaders of the 20th-century in Lebanon, Shaykh Muhammad Mahdi Shams al-Din. The author examines his role as the foremost figure of Shi’i intellectual life, a key associate of Musa al-Sadr, and president of the Islamic Shi‘i Supreme Council of Lebanon, having maintained the independence of this institution until his death from the domination of Shi‘i political parties. The core of the book consists of three interrelated main themes that constitute the major threads of Shams al-Din’s intellectual legacy: a discussion of Islamic government involving a critique of Khomeini’s theory of wilāyat al-faqīh, the role of Islam within civil government, and the necessity for political integration of the Shi‘a in their Arab nation-states to protect them from policies that raise doubts over their political allegiance to their respective countries. The project will appeal to scholars, students, academics, and researchers in Middle Eastern politics and history.

Farah W. Kawtharani has been Assistant Professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Michigan-Dearborn and a Visiting Scholar at Concordia University, USA.


Shia Islam MIddle East Muhammad Mahdi Shams al-Din Lebanon Hezbollah Middle Eastern politics political Islam Lebanon Islamic governance Middle Eastern history

Authors and affiliations

  • Farah W. Kawtharani
    • 1
  1. 1.McGill UniversityMontrealCanada

Bibliographic information