A leading representative of the Muslim Left in contemporary Turkey, Recep Ihsan Eliacik was born on December 23, 1961 in Kayseri, a large industrial city in the central Anatolian region. In his youth he became involved with the Islamist movement and joined the Raiders, an organization whose goal it was to replace Turkey's secular state with a religious state based on Islamic law. Eliacik's work brings a broadly socialist frame of analysis together with a democratic and egalitarian interpretation of Islam. Though he dismisses the suggestion that his thought is an Islamic rendering of Marxism, Eliacik approvingly cites Karl Marx's definition of religion as “the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions”. Shortly after the 2012 May Day rally, the Anti-Capitalist Muslims (AKM) published a manifesto on its website. The AKM manifesto closely parallels Eliacik's anti-capitalist and anti-oppression Quranic exegesis.