I will emphasis key points and posing questions.
Several papers delivered at this workshop contend that different suras in multiple
“Qur’anic communities” were composed in Christian contexts. Carlos Segovia argues for the existence of four attitudes to Christianity in the Qur’ān. He proposes that the “unclear dissemination of vague identity markers against a background of common ideas and practices” gradually gave way to more firm boundaries between religious communities. For him, this explains the composition of sections of the Qur’ān that identify with Christianity from the inside, even as other references pursue a kind of unitarian theology that denies the divinity of Jesus.1
1= 1 Segovia develops these ideas further in The Quranic Jesus. At p. 26 he notes the many ways in which the Qur’an describes Jesus, many of which are compatible with a Trinitarian theology if taken individually
1/ Which ones?
2/ Where, when?
3/ Then, how he explains that it is not the Christian Jesus?
4/ Segovia has abandoned (?) the field and is back to what he was trained : philosophy.
Guillaume Dye also argues for the later adaptation of Christian material He persuasively points to the alteration of the rhyme scheme of sura 19 and the insertion of anti-Christian material into a text that is “definitely not anti-Christian.”He states that this material originated in the liturgy and popular Christian traditions. He goes on to suggest that the specific context for this ‟Arabic soghitha” can be found in the Kathisma church near Jerusalem. He situates the composer of the original text in a multi-lingual milieu, where Greek, Aramaic, and Arabic were all used, and underscores the text’s broad Christology, which does not alienate any Christian group.2
1/I disagree on this. For me, it is not an insertion. Dye did not read the sura entirely.
2/Idem, I disagree. Even if Jesus is presented as a prophet in Acts, it is not what is taught in the Church. Therefore what it is written alienate any post Nicean Christian group (Jacobites, Nestorians, Chalcedonians).
3/Will Dye will come back to what he was trained which is the same field of Segovia? I dunno.
Finally, Karl-Friedrich Pohlmann has highlighted the use of Christian honorific titles for Jesus (Q 4:171; 19:30; 19:34) and the close relationship between Jesus and the Holy Spirit and the Virgin, which is not seen for any other prophet. He proposes that this originated with an educated Christian who ‟converted” into the Qur’anic community.3 Furthermore, he suggests that we should imagine that different parts of the Qur’ān were composed in different milieus, and that these parts were then combined in a single text. He also points to the multiple treatments of Iblīs (Q 2, Q 7, and Q 20) as a parallel to the various creation stories at the opening of Genesis
1/Yes. What does he make of that?
All of these approaches aim to place the Qur’ān, ‟a profoundly ahistorical text,” into history by attempting to reconstruct the kinds of communities that generated different suras.4 They also attempt to undermine the idea that boundaries between religious communities and their ideas are “natural.” 1/Just as students of the Jesus cult emphasized that it must be seen as a movement within Judaism that incorporated Gentiles, 2/so too we must stress that the Qur’ān was composed within the milieus of late antique monotheisms.
1/I'm only partially agree with this. I won't say more.
2/What was true in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th c. is not in the 5th, 6th, 7th c.
3/ I do not see the link between 1 and 2.
The three approaches also share the idea that the Qur’ān is layered. Thus Dye identifies an original Christian background in Q 19, with subsequent interventions, while Segovia uses attitudes to Christian lore as the basis for his fourfold dating of the Qur’ān as a whole. Of course, there have been numerous attempts to divide the Qur’ān into different layers of composition,6 and the shift in attitude toward the Jews has long been recognized, but Pohlmann, Dye, and Segovia identify the layers of composition that either originate within Christian communities or show a high level of familiarity with Christian texts. In this sense they share the approaches of Lüling and Luxenberg, though they do not share their normative aspirations for the ‘reformation’ of modern Islam.7
1/ Where are the material attestations of this?
Dye and Segovia explain the layering effect by suggesting that parts of the Qur’ān were composed after the Arab conquests of Syria and the Levant.8 But another possibility, which does not exclude the first,9 is that the layered effect of the Qur’ān predates the Arab conquests and is the product of an act of compilation, as well as composition. Lüling, for instance, argues that Muḥammad compiled earlier Christian material, which he supplemented, after which post-Muḥammadan Islamic material was added as well.10 This earlier material might have been composed simultaneously by different ‟proto-Qur’anic communities.” Gilliot suggests that the accusations that Muḥammad relied on foreign informants imply a recent importation of Biblical lore into the Ḥijāz, and one could imagine that the proto-Qur’anic communities were the source of this novel material.11
1/It's just as fuzzy as the Dye/Segovia theory. Wood is still stuck to Kaba/Zem Zem. He tries to mix this story with what is (real) historical sources. The sole issue is that the outcome cannot be (for me...) considered as historical.
I argue that three factors should increase the plausibility (though not provability) of greater Christian exposure to the Arabian Peninsula, namely the increased role of the Arab clients of the Romans and Persians; the missionary expansion of the Miaphysites in the borderlands between the empires, and the growth of Christian influence within Sasanian Mesopotamia.
1/ What part of Arabian peninsula? We know them : Najran/Yemen/the East. That is all. Elsewhere it is not the peninsula.
I begin by comparing the cultural production of the Jafnid and Naṣrid kings, the major Arab clients of the Romans and Persians, before examining the possible role their patronage may have had on the dissemination and prestige of the Arabic language and on the composition of the kinds of Christian inclined material that have been posited by Dye, Segovia, and Pohlmann. I conclude by postulating that the different kinds of intra-Christian Qur’anic material that they identify may have developed in different Christian contexts.
1/All of this has nothing to see with the Western peninsula (until Najran) as we have no material attestations. Moreover, he knows it : (p.16) "However, I do not find anything in the sixth-century literary sources to suggest that Christianity was significant in the Ḥijāz." So what? Hijaz or not?
(I consider Dumat as not being in the peninsula and being influenced by Iraq.) What he calls "Christian inclined material" of the Quran is not
"Christian" as such, it uses
Christian figures and theology but we are obliged to be (very) precise: this is not (at all) the same thing.
I have set out evidence here for the presence of Miaphysite and Dyophysite Christianity
in the Arabian Peninsula and ascribed a major role to Ḥīra as a gateway for missions to
the south. I have suggested the possibility that the contact zone between Syriac and
Arabic was an area where Arabic script might have been used and developed, and
where proto-Qur’anic Christian material might have emerged and been disseminated.
1/Yes. East coast, as Najran-Yemen know already Christianity one way or another before the 6th c. But nothing in the Hijaz.
2/ What is "proto-Qur’anic Christian material"? I do not know. However, I do know "Christianity"
which conveys all the figures of it from Edessa to Qatar and from Najran to Yemen. All this places are inhabited by Arabs.
Accusations of the falsification of Scripture may also originate in Christian anti-Jewish polemic.
Andrae, Les Origins de l’Islam et le christianisme, p. 203.
1/ All the anti-Jewish polemic is Christian.
It is also possible to imagine later points of transmission to a community of believers/Muslims that had already acquired a relatively distinct identity.The transmission of the Syriac Alexander legend might be an example of this, one in which a narrative modeled on the conquests of Heraclius in Iran was adapted to strip it of any specifically Christian resonance.121
And Guillaume Dye plausibly argues for a context in post-conquest Palestine for the incorporation of substantial parts of Sura 19.
1/Syriac Alexander legend can be a later insertion or not. It as no incidence on the core text of the Quran in the 6/7th c. Would it be absent, it'd change what? Nothing.
2/Dye is wrong in his analysis of Sura 19.