The Copts of Egypt: The Challenges of Modernisation and Identity

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I.B.Tauris, Dec 2, 2010 - History - 272 pages
The Coptic Christians of Egypt have traditionally been portrayed as a ‘beleaguered minority’, persecuted in a Muslim majority state and by the threat of political Islam. Vivian Ibrahim offers a vivid portrayal of the community and an alternative interpretation of Coptic agency in the twentieth century, through newly dicovered sources. Dismissing the monolithic portrayal of this community, she analyses how Copts negotiated a role for themselves during the colonial and Nasserist periods, and their multifaceted response to the emergence of the Muslim Brotherhood. She examines reform within the Church itself, and how it led to power struggles that redefined the role of the Pope and Church in Nasser's Egypt. The findings of this book hold great relevance for understanding identity politics and the place of the Coptic community in the fast-changing political landscape of today's Egypt.

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About the author (2010)

Vivian Ibrahim is Croft Assistant Professor of History and International Relations at the University of Mississippi and a Research Associate for the London Middle East Institute (LMEI). She completed her PhD in the History of the Modern Middle East at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. She holds degrees from the London School of Economics (LSE) and King's College London (KCL). She is co-editor of Political Leaderships, Nations and Charisma (2012).