Chapter 14: Turning Neither to East nor West: Social Reform and a Liberating Ethics for Leadership Development
Beverly Dawn Metcalfe, Fouad Mimouni and Tony Murfin David, We have given you mastery over the land. Judge fairly between people. Do not follow your desires, lest they divert you from God’s path . . . Qur’an, sura Sad, 38:26 Goodness does not consist in turning your face towards East or West. The truly good are those who believe in God and the Last Day, in the angels, the Scripture, and the prophets; who give away some of their wealth, however much they cherish it, to their relatives, to orphans, the needy, travellers and beggars, and to liberate those in bondage . . . Qur’an, sura Al Baqara, 2:177 INTRODUCTION In introducing the topic of leadership development in the Middle East in Chapter 1, we gave an overview of current Western models of leadership and their history. We also outlined the need, as we contend, for a culturally appropriate, Middle Eastern and/or Islamic model of leadership. In the other chapters presented here, the contributors put forward contrasting views on leadership in the nations under consideration, on the influence of individuals, both in government and in wider society, and on the specific characteristics of those leaders presented in the case studies. Inevitably, in a region of study so diverse, there are many knowledges and shades of meaning and understanding of Islamic interpretation. Nonetheless, mainstream leadership assumptions and discourses are inadequate for explaining the cultural diversity of leadership behaviours and practices described in this book (Ali 2005). There is a seductive and, we contend, erroneous tendency...
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