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Edited by Herbert Berg

This volume deals with the methodological and theoretical issues of the study of Islamic origins. Each of the twelve articles examines a different aspect of Islamic origins: early Islamic history including the life of the Prophet, the Sunna and ḥadīth, tafsīr and the Qur'ān, and the rise of Islamic law. Both sceptical (or revisionist) scholars and sanguine (or traditionalist) scholars examine and employ the various contemporary theories on the development of Islam in the first 3 centuries A.H. In so doing, they seek to exemplify the sources and methodologies used to support these theories and to discuss their relative merits.

Behnam Sadeghi and Uwe Bergmann

Prophetic prototype. Keywords Qur ʾ ān, Prophet Muh ̣ ammad, ʿ Ut ̱ mān, Ibn Mas ʿ ūd, Islamic origins, palimpsest 1 We would like to thank the owner of the Stanford ’07 folio for making it available and for submitting a sample for radiocarbon dating, Bryce Cronkite-Ratcliff for help with image trac- ing

Philip Hopkins

Iran and the Caucasus 12 (2008) 153-157 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2008 DOI: 10.1163/157338408X326253 B o o k R e v i e w s Herbert Berg (Ed.), Method and Theory in the Study of Islamic Origins , Is- lamic History and Civilization, Studies and Texts, W. Kadi, R. Wielandt (Eds.), volume 49

Michael Cooperson

Islamic Law and Society 15 (2008) 268-281 www.brill.nl/ils Islamic Law and Society © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2008 DOI: 10.1163/156851908X290628 Book Reviews Method and eory in the Study of Islamic Origins . By Herbert Berg, editor. Leiden: Brill, 2003. Pp. xiv + 402. ISBN 90 04 12602 3

Behnam Sadeghi

, Islamic origins, Sīra , Prophet Muh ̣ ammad, Mehdi Bazargan 1. Introduction And a Koran We have divided, for thee to recite it to mankind at intervals, and We have sent it down successively. 2 1 This work was supported through the research fund of Michael Cook at Princeton Univer- sity in 2005. The essay

Aaron M. Hagler

Abstract

The historical chronicle al-Kāmil fī l-ta⁠ʾrīḫ (The Complete History) of Ibn al-Aṯīr al-Ǧazarī (555/1160-630/1233) treats conservatively the existing corpus of narratives of the fitna, the first Muslim civil war (36/656-41/661). Ibn al-Aṯīr alters his main source’s accounts of troublesome moments, usually through omission, to present a universal history that serves to rehabilitate the reputation of the Umayyads without criticizing the partisans of ʿAlī. While this approach may be understood as remarkable scholarly detachment from perhaps the most contentious episode of the early Islamic narrative, in fact this narrative strategy is carefully calculated to present a past that can serve as an example for the future: one in which the disagreements that had fractured the umma were surmountable, and its unity was recoverable. Such changes, while small, had a large qualitative impact due to the narrative centrality of the fitna within the wider early Islamic narrative.

Analysing Muslim Traditions

Studies in Legal, Exegetical and Maghāzī Ḥadīth

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Harald Motzki, Nicolet Boekhoff-van der Voort and Sean W. Anthony

Since its inception, the study of Ḥadīth conducted by scholars trained in the Western academic tradition has been marked by sharp methodological debates. A focal issue is the origin and development of traditions on the advent of Islam. Scholars' verdicts on these traditions have ranged from “late fabrications without any historical value for the time concerning which the narrations purport to give information” to “early, accurately transmitted texts that allow one to reconstruct Islamic origins”. Starting from previous contributions to the debate, the studies collected in this volume show that, by careful analysis of their texts and chains of transmission, the history of Muslim traditions can be reconstructed with a high degree of probability and their historicity assessed afresh.

Charles J. Adams

perhaps not for Islam's dis- tinctiveness. These contributions, among others, are of such great significance, that no student of Islamic origins can afford to ignore them. 1. Introduction To launch into a discussion of John Wansbrough and his ideas is a daunting task. Both the style as well as the content