Why were the Balkans considered the “Powerkeg of Europe”? Well, it’s a long history of religious tensions that got fused with 19th century nationalism, and erupted into the Balkan Wars.
We tend to think of religions as monoliths, especially if it’s one we’re not familiar with. If you’ve gone through a basic world history class in the US you’re probably familiar with the basic division within Islam between Sunnis and Shia, even if you’re not exactly sure what the differences are. However, within each there are numerous sub-sects teaching wildly different things. In this video I give a brief history of the early schisms within the Shia branch of Islam, and the importance of their central figure, the Imam.
Sources & Affiliate Links
Sunnis and Shia: A Political History, by Laurence Louer https://amzn.to/31H7Ohf
Shi’i Islam, by Moojan Momen https://amzn.to/3jpzpJS
Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes, Tamim Ansary https://amzn.to/34Ha8GZ
After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split in Islam, by Lesley Hazleton, https://amzn.to/2YLZquR