Muslims make up one fifth of the world’s current population. Paul Powers explores the roots of the current Islamic upsurge in interest in religion – offering Muslims channels of political dissent in the context of a broad pattern of democratizing religious knowledge. Authority within Islam feeds a variety of developments from the empowerment of Muslim women to radical jihadism. Paul Powers holds a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago’s Divinity School. He teaches in the Department of Religious Studies at Lewis and Clark College. His research focuses on various aspects of Islamic law.