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Arabic Historical Literature from Ghadāmis and Mali

Documents from the 18th to 20th Century

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Harry T. Norris

In this work translations of four texts are provided from Ghadāmis and from Mali. The first is a biography of the Ghadāmisī scholar ʿAbdallāh b. Abī Bakr al-Ghadāmisī (1626–1719 AD), written by the eighteenth-century author Ibn Muhalhil al-Ghadāmisī. A second text is “The History of al-Sūq”, concerning al-Sūq, the historic town of Tādmakka and the original home of the Kel-Essouk Tuareg. The third text is “The Precious Jewel in the Saharan histories of the ‘People of the Veil’” by Muḥammad Tawjaw al-Sūqī al-Thānī, a contemporary Tuareg author. It pertains to the Kel-Essouk and their historical ties with the Maghreb and West Africa. The final text is a description of the Tuareg from the book “Ghadāmis, its features, its images and its sights” by Bashīr Qāsim Yūshaʿ, published in Arabic in 2001 AD.

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Edited by Alberdina Houtman, Tamar Kadari, Marcel Poorthuis and Vered Tohar

In Religious Stories in Transformation: Conflict, Revision and Reception, the editors present a collection of essays that reveal both the many similarities and the poignant differences between ancient myths in Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and modern secular culture and how these stories were incorporated and adapted over time. This rich multidisciplinary research demonstrates not only how stories in different religions and cultures are interesting in their own right, but also that the process of transformation in particular deserves scholarly interest. It is through the changes in the stories that the particular identity of each religion comes to the fore most strikingly.

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Edited by Eric F. Mason and Edmondo F. Lupieri

The seventeen studies in Golden Calf Traditions in Early Judaism, Christianity, and Islam explore the biblical origins of the golden calf story in Exodus, Deuteronomy, and 1 Kings, as well as its reception in a variety of sources: Hebrew Scriptures (Hosea, Jeremiah, Psalms, Nehemiah), Second Temple Judaism (Animal Apocalypse, Pseudo-Philo, Philo, Josephus), rabbinic Judaism, the New Testament (Acts, Paul, Hebrews, Revelation) and early Christianity (among Greek, Latin, and Syriac writers), as well as the Qur’an and Islamic literature. Expert contributors explore how each ancient author engaged with the calf traditions—whether explicitly, implicitly, or by clearly and consciously avoiding them—and elucidate how the story was used both negatively and positively for didactic, allegorical, polemical, and even apologetic purposes.

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Edited by Florian Wilk

Scriptural Interpretation at the Interface between Education and Religion examines prominent texts from Jewish, Christian, and Islamic communities with a view to determining to what extent education ( Bildung) represents the precondition, the central feature and/or the aim of the interpretation of 'Holy Scripture' in antiquity. In particular, consideration is given to the exegetical techniques, the hermeneutical convictions and the contexts of intercultural exchange which determine the process of interpretation. The volume contains a methodological reflection as well as investigations of scriptural interpretation in Jewish texts from the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C.E., in New Testament writings, and in witnesses from late ancient Christianity and in the Qur’an. Finally, it contains a critical appraisal of the scholarly oeuvre of Hans Conzelmann. This work thus fosters scholarly understanding of the function of scriptural interpretation at the interface between education and religion.

Intolerance, Polemics, and Debate in Antiquity

Politico-Cultural, Philosophical, and Religious Forms of Critical Conversation

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Edited by George H. van Kooten and Jacques van Ruiten

In Intolerance, Polemics, and Debate in Antiquity scholars reflect on politico-cultural, philosophical, and religious forms of critical conversation in the ancient Near Eastern, Biblical, Graeco-Roman, and early-Islamic world. They enquire into the boundaries between debate, polemics, and intolerance, and address their manifestations in both philosophy and religion. This cross-cultural and inclusive approach shows that debate and polemics are not so different as often assumed, since polemics may also indicate that ultimate values are at stake. Polemics can also have a positive effect, stimulating further cultural development. Intolerance is more straightforwardly negative. Religious intolerance is often a justification for politics, but also elite rationalism can become totalitarian. The volume also highlights the importance of the fluency of minorities in the dominant discourses and of their ability to develop contrapuntal lines of thought within a common cultural discourse.

The Transmission of the Variant Readings of the Qurʾān

The Problem of Tawātur and the Emergence of Shawādhdh

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Shady Nasser

This work is a study of the transmission of the variant readings of the Qurʾān, the canonization of the system Readings, and the emergence of the non-canonical shawādhdh readings. Nasser argues that Ibn Mujāhid and the early Muslim scholars viewed the variant readings as legal rulings aḥkām and that the later generation of Qurrāʾ were responsible for moving the discipline of Qirāʾāt from the domain of fiqh to the domain of Ḥadīth. After studying the theories of tawātur in detail, Nasser shows that the transmission of the system Readings of the Qurʾān failed to meet the conditions of tawātur set by the Uṣūlīs, thus creating a paradox between the transmission of the physical text, the muṣḥaf, and the transmission of its oral recitation, the “Qurʾān”.

Le Coran par lui-même

Vocabulaire et argumentation du discours coranique autoréférentiel

Anne-Sylvie Boisliveau

Dans Le Coran par lui-même, Anne-Sylvie Boisliveau livre une analyse passionnante de la manière dont le Coran est l’architecte de sa propre image. Loin d’être un texte sans relief, celui-ci utilise un vocabulaire, des procédés rhétoriques et une argumentation soigneusement choisis pour orienter l’image qu’auditeurs ou lecteurs se feront de lui.
Une analyse serrée du vocabulaire autoréférentiel montre que le Coran se décrit lui-même comme Ecriture « façon judéo-chrétienne » représentant un enjeu de communication. Mais surtout, par un triple discours – sur les actions divines, sur les Ecritures révélées antérieurement, telles la Bible, et sur la fonction prophétique –, le Coran se confère à lui-même le monopole de l’autorité issue de la révélation divine et pousse l’auditeur/lecteur à s’y soumettre.

In Le Coran par lui-même, Anne-Sylvie Boisliveau provides a ground-breaking analysis of the way the Qurʾān is the architect of its own image. Far from being a flat text, the Qurʾān uses carefully chosen vocabulary, rhetorical tools and argumentation to direct the image that listeners or readers will then have in mind. A close analysis of its self-referential vocabulary shows that the Qurʾān describes itself as a Scripture “in a Judeo-Christian style” which communicative function is stressed. By a triple discourse (on divine actions, on previous Scriptures such as the Bible and on prophethood), the Qurʾān grants itself the monopoly of divine authority through revelation and pushes the listener/reader into a decisive submission.

Winner of the I. R. Iran World Award for the Book of the Year 2014



Al-Rabghūzī, The Stories of the Prophets (2 vols.)

Qiṣaṣ al-Anbiyā’: An Eastern Turkish Version (Second Edition)

Edited by H.E. Boeschoten and J. O'Kane

A first edition of The Stories of the Prophets, written in Khwarezmian Turkish by the judge ( qāḍī) Rabghūzī and completed in 1311, was published in 1995 by a group of authors. For the second edition H.E. Boeschoten and J. O’Kane have thoroughly revised both the text edition and the translation volume on the basis of additional manuscripts and reviews of the first edition.

The Stories of the Prophets ( Qiṣaṣ al-Anbiyā’) is a traditional genre in Islamic literature. Such a work contains the res gestae of the biblical prophets and stories about other personalities and peoples up to the birth of the Prophet Muḥammed. Exceptionally, Rabghūzī’s Stories also contains a sizable account of the life of Muḥammed and his family. The work is a fundamental source both for Turkic linguistics and for Islamic Studies.

Books and Written Culture of the Islamic World

Studies Presented to Claude Gilliot on the Occasion of his 75th Birthday

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Edited by Andrew Rippin and Roberto Tottoli

In celebration of the many contributions of Claude Gilliot to Islamic studies, an international group of twenty-one friends and colleagues join together to explore books and written culture in the Muslim world. Divided into three sections – authors, genres and traditions – the essays explore themes that have been of central interest and concern to Gilliot himself including the Qurʾān, tafsīr, ḥadīth, poetry, and mysticism. Gilliot’s detailed and extensive work on many authors and texts, literary genres, and specific case-studies on many Muslim traditions renders this volume an apt tribute to him as well as offering Islamic studies’ scholars valuable research insights on these subjects. The authors of these English, French and German essays are all renowned scholars from Europe and North America, each of whom have benefitted substantially from Gilliot’s work and collegiality.

With contributions by: Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi, Mehdi Azaiez, Anne-Sylvie Boisliveau, Abdallah Cheikh-Moussa, Jean-Louis Déclais, Denis Gril, Manfred Kropp, Pierre Larcher, Michael Lecker, Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Harald Motzki, Tilman Nagel, Angelika Neuwirth, Emilio Platti, Jan van Reeth, Andrew Rippin, Uri Rubin, Walid Saleh, Roberto Tottoli, Reinhard Weipert, Francesco Zappa

The Character of Christian-Muslim Encounter

Essays in Honour of David Thomas

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Edited by Douglas Pratt, Jon Hoover, John Davies and John A. Chesworth

The Character of Christian-Muslim Encounter is a Festschrift in honour of David Thomas, Professor of Christianity and Islam, and Nadir Dinshaw Professor of Inter Religious Relations, at the University of Birmingham, UK. The Editors have put together a collection of over 30 contributions from colleagues of Professor Thomas that commences with a biographical sketch and representative tribute provided by a former doctoral student, and comprises a series of wide-ranging academic papers arranged to broadly reflect three dimensions of David Thomas’ academic and professional work – studies in and of Islam; Christian-Muslim relations; the Church and interreligious engagement. These are set in the context of a focussed theme – the character of Christian-Muslim encounters – and cast within a broad chronological framework.

Contributors, excluding the editors, are: Clare Amos, John Azumah, Mark Beaumont, David Cheetham, Rifaat Ebied, Stanisław Grodź SVD, Alan Guenther, Damian Howard SJ, Michael Ipgrave, Muammer İskenderoğlu, Risto Jukko, Alex Mallett, Juan Pedro Monferrer-Sala, Lucinda Mosher, Gordon Nickel, Jørgen Nielsen, Claire Norton, Emilio Platti, Luis Bernabé Pons, Peniel Rajkumar, Peter Riddell, Umar Ryad, Andrew Sharp, Sigvard von Sicard, Richard Sudworth, Mark Swanson, Charles Tieszen, John Tolan, Davide Tacchini, Herman Teule, Albert Walters.