Dynamism in the Urban Society of Damascus

The Ṣāliḥiyya Quarter from the Twelfth to the Twentieth Centuries


This book presents a new perspective on Islamic urban society: a dynamism of social networking and justice which caused both rapid development and sudden decay in the Ṣāliḥiyya quarter. Founded in the northern suburbs of Damascus by Hanbali ulama who migrated from Palestine to Syria in the mid-12th century, the quarter developed into a city through waqf endowments. It has attracted the attention of historians and travelers for its unique location, popular movements and religious features. Through the study of local chronicles, topographies and archival sources and through modern field research, Toru Miura explores the history of the Ṣāliḥiyya quarter from its foundation to the early 20th century, comparing it to European, Chinese and Japanese cities.

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Toru Miura is Professor of Comparative History at Ochanomizu University and Head of the Documentation Centre for Islamic Area Studies at the Toyo Bunko (Oriental Library). He has published extensively on social history. His works include Islamic Urban Studies: Historical Review and Perspectives (co-editor, London, 1994) and The Vellum Contract Documents in Morocco in the Sixteenth to Nineteenth Centuries (co-editor, Tokyo, 2015).
All interested in Islamic and middle eastern history, especially Arab history, and all interested in urban history and urban studies in Europe, South Asia, Southeast Asia, China and Japan.
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