Poster advertisement for the newspaper Die Islamische Welt

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A poster advertising the German language journal Die Islamische Welt (The Islamic World), with a list of its contributors.


The journal Die Islamische Welt (The Islamic World) is an example of German-Islamic cooperation during the First World War. The propaganda journal covered various topics relating to Islamic society, history, culture, and art. Its objective was to provide the German public with an understanding of the Islamic world, thereby advertising the German-Ottoman alliance. It was published from 1916 to 1918 and was based on the Istanbul-based, pan-Islamic journal al-Alam al-Islami (The Islamic World). Abd al-Aziz Jawish and Abd al-Malik Hamza edited the German version during their stay in Berlin throughout the war. The two Egyptians used a wide range of individuals, who were engaged in pro-German and/or pro-Ottoman propaganda. The Arabs, Turks, and Germans, who wrote for the journal, were political activists, journalists, and orientalists, such as Shakib Arslan, Halil Halid, and Martin Hartmann. All writers had close ties either to the German Foreign Office or the Ottoman War Ministry. These two institutions were central to their respective foreign propaganda campaigns and were therefore responsible for the joint advertisement of military cooperation. The journal was mostly financed by the Ottoman War Ministry. However, the German authorities remained suspicious of this, as they feared losing influence over the content of the magazine. In fact, some texts in The Islamic World were far more pro-Ottoman and critical of Germany than similar journals of exclusively German origin. Thus, the journal is an example of a difficult, war-related relationship between German and non-German players. Although they pursued a common greater goal, their respective individual interests were too important for the different parties.