Sayyid Qutb: Sayyid Qutb (1906-1966) was a foremost thinker of the latter half of the 20th Century. Born in Egypt in 1906, he came from a deeply religious Egyptian background. He started his career as literary writer and critic, and progressed to become one of the most original and independent Muslim thinkers. He wrote with a profound sense of conviction, which endeared him to his readers and supporters, but brought him increasingly into conformation with those in power. Refusing to change his opinions he was executed by the Nasser regime of Egypt on 1 August 1966. Sayyid Qutb has more than 25 literary works to his name, of which In the Shade of the Qur'an, his tafsir, is the largest and most important.