A Journey in Islamic Thought: The Life of Fathi Osman by Ghada Osman


From pre-revolutionary Egypt to the Muslim Brotherhood, and from imprisonment to exile, this is the life of Fathi Osman: a leading Egyptian-born thinker at the forefront of modern Islamic reformism for nearly four decades. Joining the Muslim Brotherhood as a young man, Fathi Osman rose through the ranks of the organization thanks to his own considerable oratory skills and his relationship with leading Brotherhood figures, Sayyid Qutb and Hasan al-Hudaybi. But as he began to recognize the covert violent aspects of the Brotherhood, he increasingly distanced himself and voiced his opposition. He was, due to his association with the Muslim Brothers, imprisoned a number of times before he eventually left Egypt in self-imposed exile. Using interviews, family documents, and archival materials to chronicle Fathi Osman’s ideological development from spokesperson for the prototypical Islamist movement to formulator of a radical Islamic reformist ideology, Ghada Osman sheds light on the lure and inner workings of a major Islamist movement and the role of Islamic reform in the global arena. In the process, she has produced a dispassionate and thoroughly researched biography of a major figure of the twentieth-century Arab and Muslim intellectual world.