This book is about a contemporary social phenomenon which is known by a number of different names: "the Volunteers' Movement", "the Service Movement" or just "Hizmet." Hizmet is also often referred to as the Gülen Movement by researchers and journalists, using the name of the Islamic scholar who inspired the Movement, Fethullah Gülen.
The Movement originated in 1970s' Turkey as a faith-inspired initiative to improve educational opportunities for a local community; since then, it has grown into a transnational educational, intercultural and interfaith movement. It is estimated that participants number in several millions. Hizmet has securely established respected institutions (of different kinds, but mostly schools) on every continent revealing the capacity of an Islam-inspired movement to mobilize huge numbers of religiously minded and observant individuals not only to accept but to cherish a secular, pluralist, democratic social and political order.
Hizmet has attracted a great deal of academic attention in recent years. This book is intended to summarize and represent the conclusions of much of that academic work in a manner more easily accessible to the lay person or non-specialist.
Blue Dome Press