The 10 Best Islam Textbooks

video play icon 10 Best Islam Textbooks

This wiki has been updated 20 times since it was first published in July of 2018. Whether you're a student of religion or merely an avid reader of history and culture who's curious about the Muslim faith, the Islam textbooks on our list will surely have something to offer you. Many cover the entire history of the faith, while others take a specific look at one facet or time period. We've selected accessible and comprehensible choices written by experts and scholars. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. The Study Quran: A New Translation And Commentary

2. Destiny Disrupted

3. The Story of the Qur'an

Editor's Notes

June 03, 2020:

Many Westerners recognize they know very little about Islam, but in an increasingly globalized world, having even a rudimentary knowledge of the faith can help in understanding current events, politics, and much more. We selected these textbooks to appeal to both serious students in school and curious laypeople who want to know more, and prioritized works penned by experts and scholars with easy-to-digest writing styles without academic jargon. For more volumes on religion, consider the titles on our list of history of Christianity books and selection of thought-provoking books about religion and spirituality.

We said goodbye to The Shambhala Guide To Sufism to add The Garden of Truth in its place. Both texts consider Sufism, but while The Shambhala Guide is written by a sympathetic Western Islamicist who doesn't participate in the practices, The Garden of Truth works to introduce the inner teachings of Sufism in the manner of classical Sufi works using contemporary language. This gives the reader a better, more intimate insight.

You'll also find Destiny Disrupted and The Story of the Qur'an joining the ranks today at the expense of The Religion And The People and Past, Present, And Future which are both fine works, however, we wanted to bring in fresh perspectives and our two new additions fit that bill. Both texts draw readers in with interesting new insights and non-Western viewpoints.

We wanted to curate books that addressed some of the myriad facets that Islam has touched, so consider creative contributions with Islamic Art and Architecture, take a dive into war and politics with Islam: Volume 1, or brief yourself on a few flashpoints with Islam: The Key Concepts.

Special Honors

Learn Religions Learn Religions is a rich resource for those curious about the many facets of belief systems from all over the world. Their mission is to help readers explore their own faiths and those of their neighbors, as well as get a grasp on the world’s major religions. You’ll find a library of study guides, prayers, devotionals, and reference documents that offer credible and balanced coverage of prominent faiths, including Islam, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Judaism, and Taoism.

Khan Academy Whether you're in school or simply learning about Islam under your own steam, Khan Academy is an online educational platform with tons of resources to supplement your studies. You can peruse videos and articles explaining everything from the golden age, art, and the rise of empires, as well as general introductions and treatments on the origins of the religion.

4. Islam: Volume 1

5. Islamic Art and Architecture

6. The Garden of Truth

7. Islam: The Key Concepts

8. "Islam" by Jamal J. Elias

9. Tafsir And Islamic Intellectual History

10. Islam: The Straight Path

Gia Vescovi-Chiordi
Last updated by Gia Vescovi-Chiordi

Born in Arizona, Gia is a writer and autodidact who fled the heat of the desert for California, where she enjoys drinking beer, overanalyzing the minutiae of life, and channeling Rick Steves. After arriving in Los Angeles a decade ago, she quickly nabbed a copywriting job at a major clothing company and derived years of editing and proofreading experience from her tenure there, all while sharpening her skills further with myriad freelance projects. In her spare time, she teaches herself French and Italian, has earned an ESL teaching certificate, traveled extensively throughout Europe and the United States, and unashamedly devours television shows and books. The result of these pursuits is expertise in fashion, travel, beauty, literature, textbooks, and pop culture, in addition to whatever obsession consumes her next.

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