Journal of Islamic and Muslim Studies (JIMS)
JIMS Mission Statement
The Journal of Islamic and Muslim Studies (JIMS) is the official publication of the North American Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (NAAIMS). The journal's goal is to expand and develop a multidisciplinary repertoire of scholarship on the study of Islam and Muslims.
JIMS hopes to fill a vacuum in the international landscape of Muslim societies by disseminating knowledge regarding the Muslim world through the diverse lived-experiences of Muslims. JIMS will publish original scholarly research in the field of Islamic and Muslim studies; encourage ongoing high-quality research; pursue debate about Islam and the experience of Muslims from interdisciplinary perspectives; support the study of Muslim identities and their relationship to Islamic traditions; publish reviews of recent scholarly literature and films, and engage with current issues and pedagogies in the field.
Goals & Objectives
To provide a greater understanding of Islam and Muslims, this publication strives to:
- Pursue scholarly discussion and debate on Islam as a religion and a civilization;
- Encourage the study of Muslim identities and their relationship with Islamic traditions;
- Highlight multidisciplinary research pertaining to Muslim experiences across a
broad cross-section of ethnicities and cultures on seven continents;
- Develop an interdisciplinary repertoire of scholarship on the historical development
of “Islamic thought,” and its impact on the social, religious and political experiences of Muslims; and
- Expand the study of gender issues in Muslim societies to acquire a balanced understanding
of Muslim experiences.
JIMS Statement of Purpose
With the mission of the North American Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (NAAIMS) focused on providing "… a forum for the production and dissemination of academic research on Islam and the diverse lived-experience of Muslims …" it is befitting that its bi-annual double-blind peer-reviewed official publication, the Journal of Islamic and Muslim Studies (JIMS), dedicated solely to Islamic and Muslim studies, affords an academic setting to analyze and examine various approaches to understanding Islam as a diverse and global phenomenon while expanding Islam as a religion and a civilization without the polemics and apologetics that dominated the 20th century.
There are many journals devoted to the publication of knowledge relevant to Muslims. However, journals that focus on the Middle East, South East Asia, African studies represent area studies that do not necessarily cover issues pertaining to the study of Islam and Muslims. With its focus solely on Islamic and Muslim studies, JIMS encourages both the study of Islam as a religion by examining hadith, fiqh, sunnah, shari'ah, Qur'anic text, and tafsir (text interpretation), and the study of Muslims by examining "Islamic thought" and its impact on Muslims, their lifestyles and experiences.
Understanding the impact of "Islamic thought" on Muslims is part of the study of Islamic civilization and a necessary channel to explore how Muslims perceive Islam and how their perceptions impact various dimensions of their experiences. Its goal is to provide a deeper understanding of Islam through the multidisciplinary study of the diverse lived-experience of Muslims across a broad cross-section of ethnicities and cultures throughout the globe. This interdisciplinary repertoire of scholarship hopes to examine, analyze, and identify experiences from the large Muslim mosaic of cultures.
Although the existing Journal of Islamic Studies and Contemporary Islam encourage the study of Islam from interdisciplinary perspectives, but as interest in Islam and Muslims' lives grows throughout the academy, a fairly new field of "Muslim studies" is developing. This growing field has an interest in studying "Islamic thought" and the diverse lived-experiences of Muslims, thereby making it inter-and multidisciplinary by nature. According to NAAIMS President Jon Mandaville (Portland State University), "JIMS hopes to create its own unique niche in the field of Islamic and Muslim studies and become instrumental in encouraging major universities in North America to establish departments for Muslim studies, not just Islamic studies. It is our hope that JIMS will encourage innovative tools for the theoretical and analytical study of Muslim experiences and the spirit of Islam."
In the last twenty years, there has been an explosion of knowledge and scholarship about Islam and the Muslim World. Interdisciplinary work, theoretical advances, innovative methodologies, technological innovations, and analytical tools are moving the field of Islamic Studies ahead. On the demand side, there is a growing and dramatic interest in the field of Islam. Classrooms worldwide are restructuring curricula to respond to the needs of a changing and increasingly diverse and demanding student body and a globalizing world. They engage in the critique of Western discourse, and the interrogation of the politics of knowledge production, and the dissemination of interdisciplinary knowledge about Islam and Muslims in the US and around the world.
According to JIMS Editor in Chief, Vincent J. Cornell (Emory University), "the journal's mission to pursue ground-breaking interdisciplinary Scholarship on the study of Islam and Muslims is in line with the mission of Emory University's Ph.D. Program in Islamic Civilizations Studies. This journal will provide an important publication outlet for regional study programs at major universities across North America that support Islamic, Middle Eastern, African, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Central Asian studies. Our hope is that it will inspire and generate innovative research, debates, and discussions on Islam, Muslim societies, and Muslim experiences in a wide variety of contexts."