Uni-Zeugs - Druckversion
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Uni-Zeugs - Jera - 05.09.2018
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Introduction to Islamic Civilization
This course offers an introduction to the intellectual, social, political, and cultural formations resulting from the revelation of Islam in the Arabian Peninsula in the 7th century until around 1800 CE. It is a “civilization” course and is introductory in nature. It is not a course in Islamic history, religion, philosophy, art, science, or literature, although all of these will be considered in various ways throughout the semester. The intent of the course is to survey the structures, themes, keywords, and subjects that are of interest for the study of Islamic societies, and to encounter a sampling of the historical sources that inform such surveys. Whether through documents, letters, sermons, explanations, publications, songs, or literature, the intention is to use historical sources in order to illuminate our understanding of the events of the past, and in particular, to help the student evaluate narratives about the past for themselves.
The course consists of a lecture and a recitation. All students must be registered for and attend both. The lectures will contextualize the required readings and primary sources, and students will participate in discussions about them in recitation. In addition to weekly readings, assignments include a weekly response post (~1 page), a midterm exam and a final exam. All of the course materials are presented in English.
By the end of the semester, you will be able to:
(1) Offer original interpretations of primary works (in translation)
(2) Identify knowledge, methods, and conventions of the study of Islamic Civilizations
(3) Use writing as a means to develop critical thinking and frame problems in comparative and historical contexts
(4) Engage in an effective comparative study of primary works of philosophy, history, politics, and religion from the Islamic world
(5) Connect elements of Islamic Civilization to global cultural heritage with the issues and questions that you'll face in your own life as a foundation for active citizenship and lifelong learning
(6) Become a more critical and self-aware member of a multicultural community by learning about different cultures
The following texts are associated with the class. There are two required texts: Rahman's Islam and Robinson's Islamic Civilization in Thirty Lives. The two recommended texts provides additional context, background, and explanation for some of the topics from the course. Students without previous experience in Islamic subjects are encouraged to use these texts to supplement their engagement with the course. All of the books are available at Book Culture and the university bookstore, and used books are generally available and encouraged.
Rahman, Fazlur, Islam (2nd Edition), Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979-2002. (9780226702810)
Robinson, C. F. Islamic Civilization in Thirty Lives: The first 1,000 years. London: Thames & Hudson, 2016. (9780520292987)
Endress, G., & Hillenbrand, C. Islam: An Historical Introduction. New York: Columbia University Press, 2002. (9780231126830)
Fadiman, J., Frager, R., & Smith, H. Essential Sufism. San Francisco: Harper Collins, 1999 (9780062514752).
Translations of the primary sources are available as PDF files on our Courseworks/Canvas page.
Readings: Parker, Roman Arabian Frontiers
Thirty Lives, “Introduction” and “1. Muhammad”
1) Mu‛allaqa of ‛Antara
2) Ibn al-Kalbī, Book of Idols
3) Ode of Al-A‛sha
RE: Uni-Zeugs - Jera - 19.09.2018
Political and Doctrinal Tensions
Rippin and Knappert, "Introduction to Scriptural Interpretation"
(Buch) Thirty Lives, “4. `Abd al-Malik” and “7. al-Ma’mun”
1) Sunni doctrines
2) Ḥasan al-Baṣrī’s letter to the Caliph
3) “Muder of ‛Uthmān,” by Ṭabarī
4) Kharijite sermon
5) Shī‛ī Islam