Sufism, Mystics and Saints in Modern Egypt

Research output: Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook


For centuries Sufism—Islamic mysticism—held a major place in Islamic spirituality, intellectual life, and popular religion. While many scholars have commented on Sufism's decline, few have delved deeply into present-day Egyptian Sufism or considered it as a system in its own right. Drawing on her detailed fieldwork and a variety of little known literary sources, Valerie J. Hoffman presents Sufism as it exists in Egypt today, in the vivid experiences of its adherents. With an array of conclusions that overturn widely held beliefs about modern Sufis, Hoffman argues that the apparent assimilation of Egyptian Sufism masks a thriving movement hidden from the Western world. From her experiences as a quasi disciple of a Sufi master, she offers new insights into the movement's evolution, the vital role of women in Sufism, and Sufi perspectives on gender and sexuality.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Place of PublicationColumbia, SC
PublisherUniversity of South Carolina Press
Number of pages484
ISBN (Print)9781570038495
StatePublished - 1995

Publication series

NameStudies in Comparative Religion


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