The term is also used in reference to political Islam.
Edward Said, author of Orientalism, wrote:
- "For most of the Middle Ages and during the early part of the Renaissance in Europe, Islam was believed to be demonic religion of apostasy, blasphemy, and obscurity. It did not seem to matter that Muslims considered Mohammed a prophet and not a god; what mattered to Christians was that Mohammed was a false prophet, a sower of discord, a sensualist, a hypocrite, an agent of the devil....Real events in the real world made of Islam a considerable political force. For hundreds of years, great Islamic armies and navies threatened Europe, destroyed its outposts, colonized its domains..... Even when the world of Islam entered a period of decline and Europe a period of ascendancy, fear of 'Mohammedanism' persisted. Closer to Europe than any of the other non-Christian religions, the Islamic world by its very adjacency evoked memories of its encroachments on Europe, and always, of its latent power again and again to disturb the West. Other great civilizations of the East - India and China among them - could be thought of as defeated and distant and hence not a constant worry. Only Islam seemed never to have submitted completely to the West; and when, after the dramatic oil-price rises of the early 1970s, the Muslim world seemed once more on the verge of repeating its early conquests, the whole West seemed to shudder."
- Covering Islam; book by Edward Said; P4-5; 1981