Michael A. Sells is Professor and Chairperson of the Department of Religion at Haverford College. He is the author of several books on religion, including Mystical Languages of Unsaying (1994).
The New Crusades takes head-on the idea of an emergent "Cold War" between Islam and the West. It explores the historical, political, and institutional forces that have raised the specter of a threatening and monolithic Muslim enemy and provides a nuanced critique of much received wisdom on the topic, particularly the "clash of civilizations" theory. Bringing together twelve of the most influential thinkers in Middle Eastern and religious studies—including Edward Said, Roy Mottahedeh, and Fatema Mernissi—this timely collection confronts such depictions of the Arab-Islamic world, showing their inner workings and how they both empower and shield from scrutiny Islamic radicals who operate from similar paradigms of inevitable and absolute conflict.