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Breaching the Bronze Wall deals with the idea that the word of honorable Muslims constituted proof and with the concept that written documents and the word of non-Muslims were inferior. Foreign merchants in cities like Istanbul, Damascus or Alexandria could barely prove any claim, as neither their contracts nor their words were of any value if countered by Muslims. Francisco Apellániz explores how both groups labored to overcome these ‘biases against non-Muslims’ in the courts and markets of Mamluk Egypt and Syria of the 14th and 15th centuries, and how the Ottoman conquest (1517) imposed a new, orthodox view on the problem. The book dives into the Middle Eastern archive and the Ottoman Dīvān, and scrutinizes the intricacies of sharia and the handling of these intracacies by consuls, dragomans, qaḍīs and other legal actors.
Eurasian Parallels, Connections and Divergences
The concept, practice, institution and appearance of ‘the state’ have been hotly debated ever since the emergence of history as a discipline within modern scholarship. The field of medieval Islamic history, however, has remained aloof from most of these debates. Rather it tends to take for granted the particularity of dynastic trajectories within only slowly changing bureaucratic contexts. Trajectories of State Formation promotes a more critical and connected understanding of state formation in the late medieval Sultanates of Cairo and of the Timurid, Turkmen and Ottoman dynasties. Projecting seven case studies onto a broad canvas of European and West-Asian research, this volume presents a trans-dynastic reconstruction, interpretation and illustration of statist trajectories across fifteenth century Islamic West-Asia.

Contributors include: Contributors are: Georg Christ, Kristof D’hulster, Jan Dumolyn, Albrecht Fuess, Dimitri J. Kastritsis, Beatrice Forbes Manz, John L. Meloy, Jo Van Steenbergen, and Patrick Wing.
During several decades, syntactic reconstruction has been more or less regarded as a bootless and an unsuccessful venture, not least due to the heavy criticism in the 1970s from scholars like Watkins, Jeffers, Lightfoot, etc. This fallacious view culminated in Lightfoot’s (2002: 625) conclusion: “[i]f somebody thinks that they can reconstruct grammars more successfully and in more widespread fashion, let them tell us their methods and show us their results. Then we’ll eat the pudding.” This volume provides methods for the identification of i) cognates in syntax, and ii) the directionality of syntactic change, showcasing the results in the introduction and eight articles. These examples are offered as both tastier and also more nourishing than the pudding Lightfoot had in mind when discarding the viability of reconstructing syntax.
Das Choreodrama "Le Sacre du printemps" im Spiegel der 'Theaterreform um 1900'
Igor’ Stravinskijs "Le Sacre du printemps" gilt als Meilenstein der Musik- und Tanzgeschichte. Gleichwohl hat die Wissenschaft einen Schlüsselaspekt zum Verständnis des Werkes bislang übersehen: die ‚Theaterreform um 1900‘. Leila Zickgraf zeigt erstmals, dass Stravinskij mit dem "Sacre" sein höchst eigenes ‚Theater der Zukunft‘ verwirklichte. Durch die Rhythmen seiner Komposition versetzte er Tänzer wie Publikum in einen körperlich erfahrbaren Rausch, wodurch er die Zuschauer ins Bühnengeschehen integrierte. Mit seiner interdisziplinären Ausrichtung sowie seiner umfassenden Quellenerschließung leistet das Buch einen wichtigen Forschungsbeitrag zu einem noch immer ungenügend ausgeleuchteten Meisterwerk.
Controversial poetry played a crucial role in dealing with religious, political, and scholarly conflicts from 1400 until 1625. This volume analyses roles and functions of Latin, Italian, Dutch, German, Scots, and Hungarian poetry in specific historical controversies.
A media theory of poetical impact is proposed by Franz-Josef Holznagel and Dieuwke van der Poel. Levente Seláf, Philipp Steinkamp, and Guillaume van Gemert examine the genres sung in wars, and in rulers’ controversies. Judith Keßler, Dirk Coigneau, Juliette Groenland, and Regina Töpfer analyse how female and male rhetoricians and humanists use verse in religious, municipal, and educational conflicts. Signe Rotter-Broman, Samuel Pakucs Willcocks†, and Alasdair MacDonald explain how reception strategies can shape cultural and political identities.

Controversial Poetry 1400-1625 diskutiert den entscheidenden Einfluss von Controversial Poetry, Kontrovers-Dichtung, in Konflikten zwischen 1400 und 1625. Dafür werden die Rollen und Funktionen lateinischer, italienischer, niederländischer, deutscher, schottischer und ungarischer Dichtung in konkreten historischen Kontroversen analysiert. Eine Medientheorie der Beeinflussung durch Dichtung entwerfen Franz-Josef Holznagel and Dieuwke van der Poel. Levente Seláf, Philipp Steinkamp, and Guillaume van Gemert untersuchen verschiedene Gattungen gesungener Politik in Kriegen und Auseinandersetzungen von Herrschern. Judith Keßler, Dirk Coigneau, Juliette Groenland und Regina Töpfer analysieren, wie weibliche und männliche rederijkers und Humanisten Verse in konfessionellen, städtischen und Bildungs-Konflikten verwenden. Signe Rotter-Broman, Samuel Pakucs Willcocks† und Alasdair MacDonald erklären, wie Rezeptions-Strategien kulturelle und politische Identitäten gestalten können.
Mutual Recognition
In Early Christians Adapting to the Roman Empire: Mutual Recognition Niko Huttunen challenges the interpretation of early Christian texts as anti-imperial documents. He presents examples of the positive relationship between early Christians and the Roman society. With the concept of “recognition” Huttunen describes a situation in which the parties can come to terms with each other without full agreement. Huttunen provides examples of non-Christian philosophers recognizing early Christians. He claims that recognition was a response to Christians who presented themselves as philosophers. Huttunen reads Romans 13 as a part of the ancient tradition of the law of the stronger. His pioneering study on early Christian soldiers uncovers the practical dimension of recognizing the empire.
A Companion to Geoffrey of Monmouth brings together scholars from a range of disciplines to provide an updated scholarly introduction to all aspects of his work. Arguably the most influential secular writer of medieval Britain, Geoffrey (d. 1154) popularized Arthurian literature and left an indelible mark on European romance, history, and genealogy. Despite this outsized influence, Geoffrey’s own life, background, and motivations are little understood. The volume situates his life and works within their immediate historical context, and frames them within current critical discussion across the humanities. By necessity, this volume concentrates primarily on Geoffrey’s own life and times, with the reception of his works covered by a series of short encyclopaedic overviews, organized by language, that serve as guides to further reading.

Contributors are Jean Blacker, Elizabeth Bryan, Thomas H. Crofts, Siân Echard, Fabrizio De Falco, Michael Faletra, Ben Guy, Santiago Gutiérrez Garcia, Nahir I. Otaño Gracia, Paloma Gracia, Georgia Henley, David F. Johnson, Owain Wyn Jones, Maud Burnett McInerney, Françoise Le Saux, Barry Lewis, Coral Lumbley, Simon Meecham-Jones, Paul Russell, Victoria Shirley, Joshua Byron Smith, Jaakko Tahkokallio, Hélène Tétrel, Rebecca Thomas, Fiona Tolhurst.
Editor: Roald Dijkstra
The apostle Peter gradually became one of the most famous figures of the ancient world. His almost undisputed reputation made the disciple an exquisite anchor by which new practices within and outside the Church could be established, including innovations in fields as diverse as architecture, art, cult, epigraphy, liturgy, poetry and politics. This interdisciplinary volume inquires the way in which the figure of Peter functioned as an anchor for various people from different periods and geographical areas. The concept of Anchoring Innovation is used to investigate the history of the reception of the apostle Peter from the first century up to Charlemagne, revealing as much about Peter as about the context in which this reception took place.
Rise and Fall of Disease in Europe
In A History of Population Health Johan P. Mackenbach offers a broad-sweeping study of the spectacular changes in people’s health in Europe since the early 18th century. Most of the 40 specific diseases covered in this book show a fascinating pattern of ‘rise-and-fall’, with large differences in timing between countries. Using a unique collection of historical data and bringing together insights from demography, economics, sociology, political science, medicine, epidemiology and general history, it shows that these changes and variations did not occur spontaneously, but were mostly man-made. Throughout European history, changes in health and longevity were therefore closely related to economic, social, and political conditions, with public health and medical care both making important contributions to population health improvement.

Readers who would like to have a closer look at the quantitative data used in the trend graphs included in the book can find these it here.
Legal and Moral Theological Literature and the Formation of Early Modern Ibero-America
Editors: Thomas Duve and Otto Danwerth
Knowledge of the pragmatici sheds new light on pragmatic normative literature (mainly from the religious sphere), a genre crucial for the formation of normative orders in early modern Ibero-America. Long underrated by legal historical scholarship, these media – manuals for confessors, catechisms, and moral theological literature – selected and localised normative knowledge for the colonial worlds and thus shaped the language of normativity.

The eleven chapters of this book explore the circulation and the uses of pragmatic normative texts in the Iberian peninsula, in New Spain, Peru, New Granada and Brazil. The book reveals the functions and intellectual achievements of pragmatic literature, which condensed normative knowledge, drawing on medieval scholarly practices of ‘epitomisation’, and links the genre with early modern legal culture.

Contributors are: Manuela Bragagnolo, Agustín Casagrande, Otto Danwerth, Thomas Duve, José Luis Egío, Renzo Honores, Gustavo César Machado Cabral, Pilar Mejía, Christoph H. F. Meyer, Osvaldo Moutin, and David Rex Galindo.