Islamic Political Thought: An Introduction contains 16 chapters adapted from articles in The Princeton Encyclopedia of Islamic Political Thought, a reference work published in 2013. This volume, shorter and more streamlined than the parent work, presents broad, comprehensive discussions of central themes and core concepts. These chapters were designed to integrate and contextualize the contemporary political and cultural situation of Islam while also examining in depth the historical roots of that situation. In 2014, the year 1435 of the Muslim calendar, the Islamic world was estimated to account for a population of approximately a billion and a half, representing about one-fifth of humanity. In geographical terms, Islam occupies the center of the world, stretching like a big belt across the globe from east to west. From Morocco to Mindanao, it encompasses countries of both the consumer North and the disadvantaged South. It sits at the crossroads of America, Europe, and Russia on one side and black Africa, India, and China on the other. Historically, Islam is also at a crossroads, destined to play a world role in politics and to become the most prominent world religion during the 21st century. Islam is thus not contained in any national culture; it is a universal force.