Salafism in Lebanon: local and transnational movements (2018)
in: Cambridge Middle East studies, 49
The past two decades have seen an increasing association between Lebanese Salafism and violence, with less attention being paid to Salafis who focus on peaceful proselytization. In reality, it is these Salafis whose influence has dramatically grown since the eruption of the Syrian conflict that profoundly affected Lebanon as well. Based on extensive fieldwork, Zoltan Pall offers insights into the dynamics of non-violent Lebanese Salafi groups and examines the importance of transnational links in shaping the trajectory of the movement. In particular, he shows how the internal transformation of Salafism in Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia led to the fragmentation of the Lebanese Salafi community. By analysing Salafism as a network, we see how the movement creates and mobilizes material and symbolic resources, and how it contributes to reshaping the structures of authority within the country's Sunni Muslim community.