On Thursday 18 February, Michael Feener will deliver a lecture on the implementation of Shariʿa in Aceh, Indonesia in the lecture series ‘What’s NEW?! Current Research on Islam and the Middle East’.
This presentation serves as an introduction to the new volume Islam and the Limits of the State edited by David Kloos, Annemarie Samuels, and Michael Feener examining the relationship between the state implementation of Shariʿa and diverse lived realities of everyday Islam in contemporary Aceh, Indonesia. Looking beyond the formal mechanisms of legislation and enforcement, we explore the dynamics of diverse actors ranging from NGOs and diaspora activists to female ulama and punk rockers to open new perspectives on the complexity of Muslim discourse and practice in communities that have experienced tremendous changes since the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. This allows us to develop a more nuanced understandings of the ways in which the state has been both a formative and a limited force with regard to religious and social transformation in this dynamic Muslim society.