Gilles Kepel

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Gilles Kepel
Gilles Kepel - Chatham House 2012.jpeg
Gilles Kepel at Chatham House in 2012
Born (1955-06-30) 30 June 1955 (age 61)
Paris, France
Nationality French
Fields Political science,
Institutions Paris Institute of Political Studies,
Institut Universitaire de France,
London School of Economics,
New York University,
Columbia University,
Thesis Le Prophète et le Pharaon (1984)
Known for Political Islam and Arab World

Gilles Kepel (born 30 June 1955) is a French political scientist and specialist on the Islamic and contemporary Arab world.[1][2] He is Professor at Sciences Po Paris and member of the Institut Universitaire de France.


He graduated in Arabic and philosophy, with two PhDs in sociology and political science.[2] He also taught at New York University in 1994, and at Columbia University in 1995. He chaired the Philippe Roman chair in History and International Relations at the London School of Economics in 2009–2010.[2]

He contributes regularly to Le Monde, The New York Times, La Repubblica, El Pais, and several Arab media outlets. He is a member of the High Council of the Arab World Institute and Academic Director of the Kuwait Program at IEP. In 2010, he was appointed to the Institut Universitaire de France.[3] He was interviewed in the 2004 BBC documentary The Power of Nightmares: The Rise Of The Politics Of Fear.

Ideas and analyses[edit]

Kepel has made significant contributions to the understanding of Islam as an ideological, political, and social force, both in the Muslim world and within immigrant communities in the West.[citation needed] He has focused in particular on the fundamentalist phenomenon, showing that since the 1970s fundamentalism has been a crucial force throughout the world and across religions—among Protestants, Catholics, and Jews as well as Muslims. Fundamentalism is to a large extent a negative reaction to modernity, which it views as an external corruption that must be eradicated in order to return to an earlier age of religious purity.


  • Le Prophète et le Pharaon. Aux sources des mouvements islamistes, Paris, Le Seuil, [1984], revised edition 1993.
  • Les banlieues de l'Islam. Naissance d'une religion en France, Paris, Le Seuil, [1987], 2nd edition 1991.
  • The revenge of God: The resurgence of Islam, Christianity and Judaism in the modern world, Cambridge, Polity, 1994.
  • A l'ouest d'Allah, Paris, Le Seuil, [1994], 1996.
  • Allah in the West: Islamic movements in America and Europe, Oxford, Polity, 1997.
  • Chronique d'une guerre d'Orient, automne 2001. Brève chronique d'Israël et de Palestine', avril-mai 2001, Paris, Gallimard, 2002.
  • La Revanche de Dieu: Chrétiens, juifs et musulmans à la reconquête du monde, Paris, Le Seuil, [1991], 2003.
  • Jihad : expansion et déclin de l'islamisme, Paris, Gallimard, [2000], revised edition 2003.
  • Bad moon rising: A chronicle of the Middle East today, London, Saqi, 2003.
  • The War for Muslim Minds: Islam and the West, Cambridge, Mass / London, Belknap Press, 2004. — translation of Fitna. guerre au coeur de l'islam : essai, Paris, Gallimard, 2004.
  • Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam, London, I.B. Tauris, 2004.
  • The roots of radical Islam, London, Saqi Books, 2005.
  • Du jihad à la fitna, Paris, Bayard / BNF, 2005.
  • G. Kepel and J-P Milelli (ed.), Al Qaeda in its own words, HUP, 2008.
  • Beyond terror and martyrdom: The future of the Middle East, Cambridge, Harvard Belknap Press, 2008.
  • Passion arabe, Paris, Gallimard, 2013
  • Passion française, Paris, Gallimard, 2014
  • Terreur dans l'Hexagone: genèse du djihad français, Paris, Gallimard, 2015.


  1. ^ Tresilian, David (7–13 June 2012). "A view from abroad". Al-Ahram Weekly. Archived from the original on 8 June 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c London School of Economics
  3. ^ Institut Universitaire de France Appointment