NEW EVIDENCE RELATING TO THE PROCESS OF ISLAMIZATION IN PALESTINE IN THE EARLY MUSLIM PERIOD THE CASE OF SAMARIA

in Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
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Abstract

There is an ongoing discussion among scholars concerning the date and the pace of the process of Islamization in Palestine during the early Muslim period. Evidence concerning this subject is rare. Muslim sources relate that there was a substantial presence of Muslims in the area of Samaria from the tenth century onwards. It has been presumed until now that this was solely a result of immigration of Arab Muslims to this area. Basing itself upon new evidence found in a local Samaritan chronicle, this article strives to show that a small part of this Muslim population originated in Samaritan population which converted to Islam during the early Muslim period mainly as a result of difficult economic conditions. As of now, this is the only evidence we have of mass conversion to Islam in Palestine during the early Muslim period. It should be emphasized that this evidence cannot be applied automatically to the Jewish and Christian communities in Palestine whose circumstances, though similar, were nevertheless somewhat different.

NEW EVIDENCE RELATING TO THE PROCESS OF ISLAMIZATION IN PALESTINE IN THE EARLY MUSLIM PERIOD THE CASE OF SAMARIA

in Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient

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