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Dispersals and Diversification

Linguistic and Archaeological Perspectives on the Early Stages of Indo-European

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Edited by Matilde Serangeli and Thomas Olander

Dispersals and diversification offers linguistic and archaeological perspectives on the disintegration of Proto-Indo-European, the ancestor of the Indo-European language family.
Two chapters discuss the early phases of the disintegration of Proto-Indo-European from an archaeological perspective, integrating and interpreting the new evidence from ancient DNA. Six chapters analyse the intricate relationship between the Anatolian branch of Indo-European, probably the first one to separate, and the remaining branches. Three chapters are concerned with the most important unsolved problems of Indo-European subgrouping, namely the status of the postulated Italo-Celtic and Graeco-Armenian subgroups. Two chapters discuss methodological problems with linguistic subgrouping and with the attempt to correlate linguistics and archaeology.

Contributors are David W. Anthony, Rasmus Bjørn, José L. García Ramón, Riccardo Ginevra, Adam Hyllested, James A. Johnson, Kristian Kristiansen, H. Craig Melchert, Matthew Scarborough, Peter Schrijver, Matilde Serangeli, Zsolt Simon, Rasmus Thorsø, Michael Weiss.

Forced Conversion in Christianity, Judaism and Islam

Coercion and Faith in Premodern Iberia and Beyond

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Edited by Mercedes García-Arenal and Yonatan Glazer-Eytan

Focusing on the Iberian Peninsula but examining related European and Mediterranean contexts as well, Forced Conversion in Christianity, Judaism and Islam traces how Christians, Jews, and Muslims grappled with the contradictory phenomenon of faith brought about by constraint and compulsion. Forced conversion brought into sharp relief the tensions among the accepted notion of faith as a voluntary act, the desire to maintain “pure” communities, and the universal truth claims of radical monotheism. Offering a comparative view of an important yet insufficiently studied phenomenon in the history of religions, this collection of essays explores the ways in which religion and violence reshaped these three religions and the ways we understand them today.

Waiting for the End of the World

European Dimensions, 950–1200

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Tsvetelin Stepanov

The French president Charles de Gaulle spoke of a Europe “from the Atlantic to the Urals”. Europe was spatially formed with these topographic parameters from the late 10th century onwards, with the massive Christianization of its inhabitants. At that time, however, all three monotheistic religions already had a steady presence there. Could such a macro-space be thought-and-narrated from a macro-perspective, in view of its medieval past? This has already been done through common ʻdenominatorsʻ such as the Migration Period, wars, trade, spread of Christianity. Could it also be seen through a common religious-philosophical and spiritual phenomenon – the Anticipation of the End of the world among Christians, Muslims, and Jews? This book gives a positive answer to the last question.

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Edited by Petra Maurer, Donatella Rossi and Rolf Scheuermann

Glimpses of Tibetan Divination: Past and Present is the first book of its kind, in that it contains articles by a group of eminent scholars who approach the subject matter by investigating it through various facets and salient historical figures.
Over the centuries, Tibetans developed many practices of prognostication and adapted many others from neighboring cultures and religions. In this way, Tibetan divination evolved into a vast field of ritual expertise that has been largely neglected in Tibetan Studies.
The Tibetan repertoire of divinatory techniques is rich and immensely varied. Accordingly, the specimen of practices discussed in this volume—many of which remain in use today—merely serve as examples that offer glimpses of divination in Tibet.
Contributors are Per Kværne, Brandon Dotson, Ai Nishida, Dan Martin, Petra Maurer, Charles Ramble, Donatella Rossi, Rolf Scheuermann, Alexander Smith, and Agata Bareja-Starzynska.

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Edited by David Thomas and John A. Chesworth

Christian-Muslim Relations, a Bibliographical History Volume 13 (CMR 13) covering Western Europe in the period 1700-1800 is a further volume in a general history of relations between the two faiths from the 7th century to the early 20th century. It comprises a series of introductory essays and also the main body of detailed entries which treat all the works, surviving or lost, that have been recorded. These entries provide biographical details of the authors, descriptions and assessments of the works themselves, and complete accounts of manuscripts, editions, translations and studies. The result of collaboration between numerous leading scholars, CMR 13, along with the other volumes in this series, is intended as a basic tool for research in Christian-Muslim relations.

Section editors: Clinton Bennett, Luis F. Bernabé Pons, Jaco Beyers, Emanuele Colombo, Karoline Cook, Lejla Demiri, Martha Frederiks, David D. Grafton, Stanisław Grodź, Alan Guenther, Vincenzo Lavenia, Emma Gaze Loghin, Gordon Nickel, Claire Norton, Radu Păun, Reza Pourjavady, Douglas Pratt, Charles Ramsey, Peter Riddell, Umar Ryad, Mehdi Sajid, Cornelia Soldat, Karel Steenbrink, Ann Thomson, Carsten Walbiner.

Knowledge and Profanation

Transgressing the Boundaries of Religion in Premodern Scholarship

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Edited by Martin Mulsow and Asaph Ben-Tov

Knowledge and Profanation offers numerous instances of profoundly religious polemicists profanizing other religions ad majorem gloriam Dei, as well as sincere adherents of their own religion, whose reflective scholarly undertakings were perceived as profanizing transgressions – occasionally with good reason. In the history of knowledge of religion and profanation unintended consequences often play a decisive role. Can too much knowledge of religion be harmful? Could the profanation of a foreign religion turn out to be a double-edged sword? How much profanating knowledge of other religions could be tolerated in a premodern world?

In eleven contributions, internationally renowned scholars analyze cases of learned profanation, committed by scholars ranging from the Italian Renaissance to the early nineteenth century, as well as several antique predecessors.

Contributors are: Asaph Ben-Tov, Ulrich Groetsch, Andreas Mahler, Karl Morrison, Martin Mulsow, Anthony Ossa-Richardson, Wolfgang Spickermann, Riccarda Suitner, John Woodbridge, Azzan Yadin, and Holger Zellentin

Islam and Iconoclasm

Ibrāhīm and the Destruction of Idols in the Qurʾān

Leyla Ozgur Alhassen

Abstract

In the Qurʾān, Ibrāhīm is portrayed as breaking the idols that his people worship (21:51–73), a story that comes at the crossroads of a number of ethical issues, including the freedom of belief. In this study, I examine the issue through a number of different lenses: Qurʾānic commentary (tafsīr on the story), art history (Islam, art and iconoclasm), legal opinions (jurisprudence), philosophical approaches (civil disobedience), and literary analysis (focused on idolatry and Ibrāhīm in the Qurʾān). In looking at the issue from these various perspectives, I argue that analyzing the story as a form of civil disobedience, while using literary analysis, lends new insights and gives modern readers tools with which to bridge some of the moral and ethical issues at play in the story of Ibrāhīm breaking his people’s idols.