From the Editors

Matti Bunzl and Rachel Havrelock

Dear Colleagues,

What is the issue with Muslims? Or, more precisely, what is the Jewish issue with Muslims? The Muslim issue with Jews? Is there an issue or is it simply a legacy of entrenched positions as Christianity's polar others? Do we in Jewish Studies neglect a textual interplay so deep that, in certain periods, it is hard to say what writing is Muslim and what Jewish. Do we tend to forget a long and productive relationship suddenly remembered when we evoke Andalus, read Maimonides, or find ourselves in a dialogue group? And, when we participate in the dialogue group, are we there in the name of Judaism and Islam or Israel and Palestine? Might the Muslim issue really be the Israel issue?

With a wide temporal and geographic reach, the Muslim Issue thinks through many of these questions. Norman Stillman speaks to the history and limitations of "Islamicate Jewish Studies." Carol Bakhos and Reuven Firestone offer glimpses into complicated textual representations. David Freidenreich openly brings Christianity back into the equation. Paul Silverstein, Mustapha Kamal, and Aomar Boum take us to Morocco where imbricated political, cultural, and religious identifications do not produce expected positions. Dinah Stillman, Ethan Katz, and Julia Cohen provide fascinating evidence of parallel trends in contemporary Europe, and Marc Baer and Marcy Brink-Danan offer further nuance in the case of Turkey. Gil Anidjar complicates the whole matter, bringing us back to the very question of the Muslim Issue.

Matti Bunzl
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Rachel Havrelock
University of Illinois at Chicago