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Book Details

  New Book

The Making of the Medieval Middle East : Religion, Society, and Simple Believers


By JACK TANNOUS (Author)
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Price : $45.00  $36.00
ISBN : 9780691179094  
Page : 664
Year of Publication : 2018    Edition : 0
Publisher : PRINCETON UNIVERSITY PRESS
Subject : RELIGION



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Description :

In the second half of the first millennium CE, the Christian Middle East fractured irreparably into competing churches and Arabs conquered the region, setting in motion a process that would lead to its eventual conversion to Islam. Jack Tannous argues that key to understanding these dramatic religious transformations are ordinary religious believers, often called “the simple” in late antique and medieval sources. Largely agrarian and illiterate, these Christians outnumbered Muslims well into the era of the Crusades, and yet they have typically been invisible in our understanding of the Middle East’s history.

What did it mean for Christian communities to break apart over theological disagreements that most people could not understand? How does our view of the rise of Islam change if we take seriously the fact that Muslims remained a demographic minority for much of the Middle Ages? In addressing these and other questions, Tannous provides a sweeping reinterpretation of the religious history of the medieval Middle East.

This provocative book draws on a wealth of Greek, Syriac, and Arabic sources to recast these conquered lands as largely Christian ones whose growing Muslim populations are properly understood as converting away from and in competition with the non-Muslim communities around them.



Jack Tannous is assistant professor of history at Princeton University.

Content :

Contents

Maps

Preface

Introduction

Part I: Simple Belief

CHAPTER 1: Theological Speculation and Theological Literacy

CHAPTER 2: The Simple and the Learned

Part II: Consequences of Chalcedon

CHAPTER 3: ‘Confusion in the Land’

CHAPTER 4: Contested Truths

CHAPTER 5: Power in Heaven and on Earth

CHAPTER 6: Competition, Schools, and Qenneshre

CHAPTER 7: Education and Community Formation

Interlude: The Question of Continuity

CHAPTER 8: Continuities—Personal and Institutional

Part III: Christians and Muslims

CHAPTER 9: A House with Many Mansions

CHAPTER 10: A Religion with a Thousand Faces

CHAPTER 11: Joining (and Leaving) a Muslim Minority

CHAPTER 12: Conversion and the Simple—The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

CHAPTER 13: Finding Their Way—The Mosque in the Shadow of the Church

Part IV: The Making of the Medieval Middle East

CHAPTER 14: Rubbing Shoulders—A Shared World

CONCLUSION: Dark Matter and the History of the Middle East

Appendix I: Approaching the Sources

Appendix II: The ‘Arab’ Conquests

Works Cited

Permissions

Index

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