Locating Religion in Victory-Making:The 1973 War Discourse in Egypt

El Menshawi, Mustafa (2018) Locating Religion in Victory-Making:The 1973 War Discourse in Egypt. Journal of Contemporary Religion, 33 (1). pp. 39-52. ISSN 1353-7903

Full text not available from this repository.


Most of the literature on the Arab–Israeli war in 1973 takes material gains and military advances as measurements that indicate victory or defeat. Accordingly, based on the magnitude of weaponry used and the associated tactics employed, scholarly works declare Egypt or Israel the winner. This article moves away from such ‘materialistic’ accounts of the war’s conclusion by exploring a similarly significant victory-maker: the use of the discourse of religion. By looking at previously untapped official and semi-official texts from the war’s onset through the eight years of President Anwar Sadat’s rule, the article finds this discourse to be composed of three thematic structures. These structures cohere into patterns that facilitated an account of the war as a massive and unquestionable Egyptian ‘victory’. The study also addresses how the interplay of language and religion was so closely attuned to the broader context that included the use of authoritarianism in politics and in the media as well as a so-called Islamic revival. Rather than supposing that the religious references in this discourse may have been in some way truthful, I show that it relied on a set of intentional falsehoods.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Journal of Contemporary Religion
Uncontrolled Keywords:
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
12 Jan 2021 14:15
Last Modified:
18 Sep 2023 01:52