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Editor: Samer Akkach
Naẓar, literally ‘vision’, is a unique Arabic-Islamic term/concept that offers an analytical framework for exploring the ways in which Islamic visual culture and aesthetic sensibility have been shaped by common conceptual tools and moral parameters. It intertwines the act of ‘seeing’ with the act of ‘reflecting’, thereby bringing the visual and cognitive functions into a complex relationship. Within the folds of this multifaceted relationship lies an entangled web of religious ideas, moral values, aesthetic preferences, scientific precepts, and socio-cultural understandings that underlie the intricacy of one’s personal belief. Peering through the lens of naẓar, the studies presented in this volume unravel aspects of these entanglements to provide new understandings of how vision, belief, and perception shape the rich Islamic visual culture.

Contributors: Samer Akkach, James Bennett, Sushma Griffin, Stephen Hirtenstein, Virginia Hooker, Sakina Nomanbhoy, Shaha Parpia, Ellen Philpott-Teo, Wendy M.K. Shaw.