a) Were an Egyptian author, educator, Islamist theorist, poet, and the leading member of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in the 1950s and '60s. Author of 24 books, including novels, literary arts' critique and works on education, he is best known in the Muslim world for his work on what he believed to be the social and political role of Islam, particularly in his books Social Justice and Ma'alim fi-l-Tariq (Milestones).
b) During most of his life, Qutb's inner circle mainly consisted of influential politicians, intellectuals, poets and literary figures, both of his age and of the preceding generation. By the mid-1940s, many of his writings were officially among the curricula of schools, colleges and universities. He has been described by some as a great artist and martyr for Islam, but by many Western observers as one who shaped the ideas of Islamists and particularly of groups such as Al Qaeda.