Writer: SALMAN RUSHDIE
Published Year: 1988
Publisher: Viking Press
Size: 3 MB
The Satanic Verses is Salman Rushdie's fourth novel, first published in 1988 and inspired in part by the life of Muhammad. As with his previous books, Rushdie heavily used magical realism and relied heavily on contemporary events and people to create his characters. The title refers to the so-called "satanic verses", a group of alleged Qur'anic verses that allow intercessory prayers to be made to three Pagan Meccan goddesses: Allāt, Uzza, and Manāt.The part of the story that deals with the "satanic verses" was based on accounts from historians al-Waqidi and al-Tabari.
In the United Kingdom, the book received positive reviews. It was a 1988 Booker Prize Finalist (losing to Peter Carey's Oscar and Lucinda) and won the 1988 Whitbread Award for novel of the year.
In the Muslim community, however, the novel caused great controversy for what many Muslims believed were blasphemous references. As the controversy spread, the book was banned in India and burned in demonstrations in the United Kingdom. In mid-February 1989, following a violent riot against the book in Pakistan, the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Supreme Leader of Iran and a Shi'a Muslim scholar, issued a fatwa calling on all good Muslims to kill Rushdie and his publishers, or to point him out to those who can kill him if they cannot themselves.