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Theme Changer

 Topic: Random Islamic History Posts

 (Read 30282 times)
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  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #330 - March 02, 2017, 03:34 PM

    Khodadad Rezakhani - The Present in the Mind's Past: Imagining the Ancients in the Iranian Popularization of Pre-Islamic History

    https://www.academia.edu/31614694/The_Present_in_the_Minds_Past_Imagining_the_Ancients_in_the_Iranian_Popularization_of_Pre-Islamic_History
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #331 - March 04, 2017, 06:50 PM

    Philip Wood - Al-Ḥīra and its Histories

    https://www.academia.edu/7806320/Al-Ḥīra_and_Its_Histories_JAOS_136_2016_785-99
    Quote
    This study considers the production of history-writing in the Naṣrid kingdom of al-Ḥīra at the end of the sixth century. It argues that Ḥīran history-writing encompassed king-lists, stories of tribal migration, and episcopal histories for the see of Ḥīra, and that the majority of these were composed in the era of the last Naṣrid king, al-Nuʿmān III. It goes on to argue that the Ḥīran material embedded in later sources such as al-Ṭabarī reflects the politics of the Ḥīran court in the period ca. 590–610, the last generation of Ḥīran independence.

  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #332 - March 09, 2017, 04:41 PM

    Back issues of Al-ʿUsur al-Wusta: The Journal of Middle East Medievalists, now available online.

    http://islamichistorycommons.org/mem/al-usur-al-wusta/
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #333 - March 10, 2017, 06:39 PM

    Eskandar Sadeghi-Boroujerdi - Scholarship in the Service of Empire: The Legacy of Ann K.S. Lambton in 20th Century Iran

    https://ajammc.com/2017/03/06/ann-lambton-in-iran/
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #334 - March 14, 2017, 07:12 PM

    Matthew Melvin-Koushki - Early Modern Islamicate Empire: New Forms of Religiopolitical Legitimacy

    https://www.academia.edu/19580345/Early_Modern_Islamicate_Empire_New_Forms_of_Religiopolitical_Legitimacy
    Quote
    The imperial ideologies developed in the post-Mongol Persianate world represent both a break with Islamic precedent and a realization of the millenarian universalism inherent in Islam itself. Early modern Muslim dynasts—styling themselves saint-philosopher-kings, millennial sovereigns and divine cosmocrators—combined Chinggisid, Persian and Islamic symbols of religiopolitical legitimacy in their quest for world domination, emblematized by Alexander the Great, Chinggis Khan and Amir Timur. During this profoundly messianic era, sultans and saints competed for sacral power (walaya); securing access to this power became a driving concern of ruling and scholarly elites, whether by way of Sufism, occultism or Alidism, and often eclectic combinations of all three. The present chapter surveys these new strategies of religiopolitical legitimation pursued between the 15th and 17th centuries by the Timurid, Aqquyunlu, Safavid, Uzbek, Mughal and Ottoman Empires, constituent members of the vast Persian cosmopolis stretching from the Balkans and Anatolia in the west to China and India in the east.

  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #335 - March 14, 2017, 07:18 PM

    Matthew Melvin-Koushki - The Quest for a Universal Science: The Occult Philosophy of Ṣāʾin al-Dīn Turka Iṣfahānī (1369-1432) and Intellectual Millenarianism in Early Timurid Iran (PhD dissertation)

    https://www.academia.edu/1246336/The_Quest_for_a_Universal_Science_The_Occult_Philosophy_of_Ṣāʾin_al-Dīn_Turka_Iṣfahānī_1369-1432_and_Intellectual_Millenarianism_in_Early_Timurid_Iran
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #336 - March 17, 2017, 09:41 AM

    Fred Donner - Periodization as a Tool of the Historian with Special Reference to Islamic History

    https://lookaside.fbsbx.com/file/Donner%20Periodization.pdf?token=AWxsiyn9PH3quHYtEJGQqQdZklkhxXJaWwArtDBOkou5I9rKwhQ80e2lWRj0wezzX7wxQ4HuLQ0DWHo2EdIdC6LhixW87xyCi6jwhid92iTaksumBf07axGSe5i0ub9Gn6Ey678noNyrVmiosrteRw2YjgGRCbzhh-f_XiydHdlVGQ
    Quote
    Abstract: The article discusses periodization and spatialization – delimiting a particular length of time, a particular region of the globe, or both – as necessary strategems for studying history, since the seamless web of human life cannot be analyzed in toto. It discusses different notions of periodization, in particular those advanced by Fernand Braudel and others of the Annales School and the concept of “Zeitschichten” proposed by Reinhart Koselleck. It surveys some of the periodizations that have traditionally been applied specifically in the realm of the history of the Islamic Near East and a number of essays discussing the periodization of Islamic history (especially those of S. D. Goitein and M. Morony). It argues that the notion of an “ideal” or “perfect” periodization of history (or of any subsection of it) that meets all needs is futile. Periodization must be seen, rather, as a tool employed by the historian that highlights a particular set of developments in a society, so that many different periodizations are possible and, indeed, desirable depending on what the historian wishes to understand. The historian must consider what development she wishes to articulate from the past and choose or fashion a periodization that most clearly illuminates that development.

  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #337 - March 18, 2017, 11:52 PM

    Sarah J Pearce reviews Darío Fernández-Morera's The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise

    https://sjpearce.net/2017/03/17/paradise-lost/
    Quote
    I’ve taken one for the team. I’ve read it so you don’t have to. Yep. That book.

  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #338 - March 25, 2017, 02:37 PM

    Forthcoming book

    Ibn Qutaybah's The Excellence of the Arabs, translated by Sarah Bowen Savant and Peter Webb

    http://www.libraryofarabicliterature.org/books/?book=12711


    Peter Webb's introduction to The Excellence of the Arabs

    https://www.academia.edu/32015767/The_Excellence_of_the_Arabs_-_Library_of_Arabic_Literature
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #339 - March 25, 2017, 09:59 PM

    Sarah J Pearce reviews Darío Fernández-Morera's The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise

    https://sjpearce.net/2017/03/17/paradise-lost/


    That review fell right on its face by my lights.  I kept waiting for the part where she revealed some sort of error or defect in his analysis.  Page after page of ad hominems and whining about his lack of respect for her field, and then it ended.  If this passes for a rebuttal in her eyes, then F-M would seem to be correct in his assessment of her field as insular, hyper-politicized, and uncritical.

    My favorite part was when she proclaims that 'Islamophobia' is inseparable from bad scholarship. 

    "Perhaps I am falling into precisely the trap that would allow Fernández-Morera to dismiss my critique as coddling Muslims and casually dismissing those with whom I disagree intellectually as Islamophobes (7); but as these examples show, whatever I might think about the inherent immorality of adopting an anti-Arab or anti-Muslim position, to adopt such a position does skew, distort, and render incorrect historical analyses. An Islamophobic attitude is not separable from bad scholarship on the Islamic world; hatred of Arabs will always affect the reading of Arabic texts. What is on the surface reflects what is below."

    She just can't help herself, even though she sees the problem.  Imagine how asinine and uncritical her proposition would sound if its equivalent were imposed upon any other field of academic scholarship.  "One cannot produce good scholarship on Christianity if one hates Christianity."  "You can't produce good scholarship on the Inquisition if you hate the medieval Catholic Church."  "No scholar can produce good historical analysis of Nazism if they dislike Nazism."  "You cannot be a scholar of Marxism, if you fear Marxism."  "Unless you respect Scientology, you are not qualified to study it."  Whether one hates/fears a particular religious movement, or any other ideology, cannot in any reasoned and critical society be asserted as the precondition for producing scholarship on that ideology in its historical context.  This isn't the medieval era anymore.

    The difference, of course, is that these are all implicitly considered 'white/Western' movements, and thus one has the privilege of being permitted to be critical towards them, while Islam continues to be 'othered' in many corners of academia, such as her field, making an equally critical mindset towards it impermissible ... even blasphemous and politically monstrous, a form of Western imperialist hate.  Islamic imperial occupation thus cannot be criticized in the same manner as European imperial occupation might.  In classical Orientalist fashion, it must be treated with kid gloves, as a foreign and 'other' object, with a halo of the sacrosanct that is denied to 'our own' religions and ideologies.  And this is how Maajid Nawaz ends up on SPLC's hate list---'Islamophobia' becomes asserted as an incriminating political offense, a marker of monstrous difference that allows one to dispose of the incriminated person as a totality.
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #340 - March 25, 2017, 10:20 PM

    I long for the day we can tell an author, "your book sucks", and explain why his book sucks, without the well being poisoned with mutual charges of "orientalist!" or "dhimmi!".

    If a book does this, or does it passive-aggressively, it's ALWAYS covering up shoddy scholarship. Morena's book may well do just that from the other side, in which case, it's fair to call it out on that, but not to sink to its level.
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #341 - March 25, 2017, 10:39 PM

    Yeah tbh I only read part of his book and didn't care for it ... particularly when he argued for the glories of pre-Islamic Spain, which mirrors the excesses he criticizes.  The historical question is whether the arguments are logical and supported by evidence, not whether the author has committed thought-crime or not.

    On the other hand, there is a legitimate debate about whether excess politicization is imposed on any particular historical field.  I don't think there's a problem examining that issue, but it should be kept distinct from the merits of the underlying historical arguments, rather than degenerating into ad hominem prosecution.  An author could be demonstrated to be a political monster by a given value system .... and that might be interesting from a political perspective .... but it doesn't mean that you've addressed their actual arguments.  Much of the time it means the opposite, you want to refute the arguments, but it's too difficult, and so is easier to go ad hominem.
  • Random Islamic History Posts
     Reply #342 - March 26, 2017, 08:41 AM

    Khaled A Beydoun - Antebellum Islam

    https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2536258
    Quote
    America’s first Muslims were slaves. Social scientists estimate that 15 to 30 percent of the Africans enslaved in the Antebellum South practiced Islam. Research indicates that the Muslim slave population could have been as high as 1.2 million. Despite their considerable presence in the Antebellum South, the history of Muslim slaves has been largely neglected within legal scholarship.

    This Article argues that the omission of Muslim slaves from legal scholarship is a consequence of the legal segregation of Black and Muslim identity during the Antebellum Era. Two factors brought about this segregation. First, the law remade Africans into Black slaves, and state slave codes criminalized their religious activity and stripped slaves of their religious identities. Second, the state adopted a political conception of Muslim identity that converted it from a religious into a racial identity in the narrow profile of “Arabs” and “Turks” – a non-white class that racially restrictive naturalization laws barred from accessing citizenship. Muslim slaves lived at the intersection of these two irreconcilable racial configurations.


    Edit: This doesn't look like the most reliable article. It would be interesting to see something on the subject that is more critical.
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