I’ve been reading Bassam Tibi’s Political Islam, World Politics and Europe.
Don’t bother with the book itself: it’s almost unreadable. This is not, by the way, Tibi’s fault. He’s a Syrian social scientist who spent his life in Germany—English must be his third language. This book was in desperate need of a good editor, and some executive at Routledge no doubt thought editorial work was merely a cost that could be safely cut.
Still, Tibi has some interesting ideas. For example, he follows Ibn Khaldun in stating that vital civilizations have a strong sense of themselves. They have an asabiyya or esprit de corps that underpin a sense of identity and a sense of a collective engagement in a civilizational project. Tibi perceives very little of this asabiyya among Europeans. In contrast, Muslims—especially Islamists among Muslim immigrants to Europe, who most worry Tibi—are overflowing with asabiyya.