The entire world of Islam is to-day in profound ferment. From Morocco to China and from Turkestan to the Congo, the 250,000,000 followers of the Prophet Mohammed are stirring to new ideas, new impulses, new aspirations. A gigantic transformation is taking place whose results must affect all mankind.
This transformation was greatly stimulated by the late war. But it began long before. More than a hundred years ago the seeds were sown, and ever since then it has been evolving; at first slowly and obscurely; later more rapidly and perceptibly; until to-day, under the stimulus of Armageddon, it has burst into sudden and startling bloom.
The story of that strange and dramatic evolution I have endeavoured to tell in the following pages. Considering in turn its various aspects - religious, cultural, political, economic, social - I have tried to portray their genesis and development, to analyse their character, and to appraise their potency. While making due allowance for local differentiations, the intimate correlation and underlying unity of the various movements have ever been kept in view.