Overview of the 20th century
DOI link for Overview of the 20th century
Overview of the 20th century book
A dozen and more leading writers, mostly Egyptians, shaped the Arab discourse of science, civilization and religion during the first half of the 20th century. The secularist wing was joined by Christian writers and academics, Louis Awad being one of the most renowned. A substantial divergence of thought distinguished individual writers within these two general categories, enough diversity in fact among the secularists to warrant a sub-category, composed of those more radically minded thinkers who followed Shibli Shumayyil in rejecting nationalism and religion for socialism and materialism. In a religiously oriented society crippled by poverty and illiteracy, and torn by secularist nationalism, this did not bode well for the cause of science, whose leading devil was now Charles Darwin. Secular nationalism had no problem implicitly supporting science over religion: both were taken to be expressions of the greatness of Arab genius.