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Russian HajjEmpire and the Pilgrimage to Mecca$
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Eileen Kane

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780801454233

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801454233.001.0001

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Russian Hajj in the Twenty-First Century

Russian Hajj in the Twenty-First Century

(p.183) Conclusion: Russian Hajj in the Twenty-First Century
Russian Hajj

Eileen Kane

Cornell University Press

This book concludes with an assessment of the state of hajj in twenty-first-century Russia. It considers how the hajj has once again become a European and a Russian phenomenon in the twenty-first century and how Islam has emerged as the fastest-growing religion on the continent. It discusses the ways that European governments support their citizens making the pilgrimage to Mecca, such as creating new institutions and services. It also examines Russian president Vladimir Putin's initiatives to support the hajj, from persuading Saudi Arabia to increase Russia's annual hajj quota, to introducing new subsidies for the pilgrims. It shows that Putin's efforts to expand Russian citizens' access to Mecca are part of state strategies for managing Islam and integrating Muslims. Finally, it explores a number of questions raised by Russia's patronage of the hajj regarding the country's identity and legitimacy, and the institutions that helped to build imperial stability, including the Russian Orthodox Church.

Keywords:   hajj, Russia, Europe, Islam, pilgrimage, Mecca, Vladimir Putin, Saudi Arabia, Muslims, Russian Orthodox Church

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