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Space and Religious Hierarchy in Ibn al-Qayyim’s Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma
Antonia Bosanquet’s Minding Their Place is the first full-length study of Ibn al-Qayyim’s (d. 751/1350) collection of rulings relating to non-Muslim subjects, Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma. It offers a detailed study of the structure, content and authorial method of the work, arguing that it represents the author’s personal composition rather than a synthesis of medieval rulings, as it has often been understood. On this basis, Antonia Bosanquet analyses how Ibn al-Qayyim’s presentation of rulings in Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma uses space to convey his view of religious hierarchy. She considers his answer to the question of whether non-Muslims have a place in the Abode of Islam, how this is defined and how his definition contributes to Ibn al-Qayyim’s broader theological world-view.
From the early phases of modern missions, Christian missionaries supported many humanitarian activities, mostly framed as subservient to the preaching of Christianity. This anthology contributes to a historically grounded understanding of the complex relationship between Christian missions and the roots of humanitarianism and its contemporary uses in a Middle Eastern context. Contributions focus on ideologies, rhetoric, and practices of missionaries and their apostolates towards humanitarianism, from the mid-19th century Middle East crises, examining different missionaries, their society’s worldview and their networks in various areas of the Middle East. In the early 20th century Christian missions increasingly paid more attention to organisation and bureaucratisation (‘rationalisation’), and media became more important to their work. The volume analyses how non-missionaries took over, to a certain extent, the aims and organisations of the missionaries as to humanitarianism. It seeks to discover and retrace such ‘entangled histories’ for the first time in an integral perspective.

Contributors include: Beth Baron, Philippe Bourmaud, Seija Jalagin, Nazan Maksudyan, Michael Marten, Heleen (L.) Murre-van den Berg, Inger Marie Okkenhaug, Idir Ouahes, Maria Chiara Rioli, Karène Sanchez Summerer, Bertrand Taithe, and Chantal Verdeil
Edition, Translation and Commentary, with Special Reference to the Ibero-Romance Terminology
Editors: Gerrit Bos and Fabian Käs
In early eleventh century Zaragoza, the eminent Jewish scholar Abū l-Walīd Marwān ibn Janāḥ wrote a glossary containing almost 1100 entries, entitled Kitāb al-Talkhīṣ. This important text, considered lost until recently, contains Arabic and foreign-language names of simple drugs, weights, measures, and other medical terms. In the present volume, the Kitāb al-Talkhīṣ is edited and translated for the first time by Gerrit Bos and Fabian Käs. In detailed commentaries, the editors identify the substances mentioned in the Talkhīṣ. They also elaborate on the role of the text in the history of Arabic glossaries concerned with medical nomenclature. Special attention is paid to Ibn Janāḥ’s Ibero-Romance phytonyms, analysed in depth by Mailyn Lübke and Guido Mensching.
Andalusi, Judaeo-Arabic, and Other Near Eastern Studies in Honor of Ross Brann
'His Pen and Ink are a Powerful Mirror' is a volume of collected essays in honor of Ross Brann, written by his students and friends on the occasion of his 70th birthday. The essays engage with a diverse range of Andalusi and Mediterranean literature, art, and history. Each essay begins from the organic hybridity of Andalusi literary and cultural history as its point of departure, introduce new texts, ideas, and objects into the disciplinary conversation or radically reassesses well-known ones, and represent the theoretical, methodological, and material impacts Brann has had and continues to have on the study of the literature and culture of Jews, Christians, and Muslims in al-Andalus.

Contributors include: Ali Humayn Akhtar, Esperanza Alfonso, Peter Cole, Jonathan Decter, Elisabeth Hollender, Uriah Kfir, S.J. Pearce, F.E. Peters, Arturo Prats, Cynthia Robinson, Tova Rosen, Aurora Salvatierra, Raymond P. Scheindlin, Jessica Streit, David Torollo.

Abstract

This essay explores, through the lens of Nasrid poets’ frequent evocations of the lands of Najd, Nasrid culture’s constructions of relationships with the origins of Islam, the origins of poetry, and the origins of the Arabic language itself; it argues that these elements are an integral part of the Nasrid dynasty’s claims to legitimacy in the realms of court, cultural production, and devotion.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'

Abstract

This article reflects on the transmission process of the literary texts which conform the corpus of the fifteenth century Hebrew cancioneros, and on the difficulties which come across facing the elaboration of an actual critical edition of those contents. These considerations came from coping with the critical edition of Shelomo Bonafed’s production which is going to be published next year. Most of these texts are still unedited or unpublished.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'

Abstract

This paper aims to deal with a layer in the history of the medieval reception and transmission of the headings of the Psalms. Taking as a main focus the glossary-commentary to Psalms included in MS Oxford, Bodleian Library, Hunt. 268, it explores the relationship between the vernacular glosses in this text and medieval and postmedieval translations of the Hebrew Bible into Castilian.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'

Abstract

The protagonist of Judah al-Harizi’s Taḥkemoni is usually thought of as an amoral trickster, but this characterization does not apply to many of his appearances in the book, in which religion plays a much larger part than is usually thought. This article calls attention to Hever’s religious dimension and to other aspects of religion in the book.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'
Author: S.J. Pearce

Abstract

This paper offers a reading of an unpublished essay by Yehuda Amichai written when he was a student of medieval Hebrew poetry at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in a seminar taught by Ḥayim Schirmann. His essay takes a comparative approach to the war poetry of Samuel ibn Naghrīla, making both sweeping claims about war poetry across time and space narrower ones about the specific qualities of poetry written in war contexts in Spain in all of its languages. Although Amichai hews closely to Schirmann’s interpretive line he goes farther than his professor does, arguing that not only does Ibn Naghrīla consolidate his roles in both the Jewish and Muslim communities in Granada through his poetry, he does so in a way that sublimates religion to other concerns; in doing so, Amichai begins to pave the way for the kind of poetic nationalism that would emerge in his own later work.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'
Author: Peter Cole

Abstract

This paper is a new translation of three Hebrew poems composed in medieval Spain.

In: 'His Pen and Ink Are a Powerful Mirror'