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Al Ma’ mun (Makers of the Muslim World)

by Michael Cooperson

Publisher: Oneworld/Viva Books Private Limited

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Description: The Abbasid caliph Al-Ma’ mun (786-813) is best known for sponsoring the translation of Greek philosophy into Arabic and for promoting the activity of mathematicians, astronomers, engineers, physicians and cartographers. In his own time, however, he was a wildly controversial figure: having come to power by overthrowing the central government in Baghdad and killing his half brother, the caliph al-Amin, he astonished his contemporaries by choosing a member of the rival house of Ali as his heir apparent. A self proclaimed defender of the faith, he supported theological positions many believers considered heretical, and towards the end of his career launched an inquisition against the scholars of Hadith who refused to accept his guidance on matters of theology. This accessible new biography offers an insight into the life and times of al-Ma’mun, treating him as the product of an age that has come to be seen as a formative period in the development of Islamic law and theology. Drawing on both contemporary and well­established sources, it offers a comprehensive portrait of one of the most fascinating figures in Islamic history, and will appeal to readers of all backgrounds. Contents: Introduction • Al-Ma’mun Attacks the Pyramid • The Scholar-Caliph • The World Inherited by Islam • Muslims: A Divided Minority • The Coming of the Abbasids • The Problem of the Sources • Education • Parents, Step-parents and Foster Parents • Topography and Domestic Space • Elementary Education • Grammar • Poetry • History and Hadith • Learning to Think • The Legacy of Iran • The Question of the Law • An Inscrutable Personality • The First Succession Crisis • The Succession to al-Rashid • Al-Ma’mum Left in the Lurch • A New Force in Khurasan • The Civil War V The Siege of Baghdad • The death of al-Amin and the Crisis of Legitimacy • The Second Succession Crisis • Al-Rida’s Claim to the Imamate • The End of the World • An Appeal to Iranian Muslims? • The Proto-Sunni Response • A Reversal of Policy? • Al-Ma’mun’s Return to Baghdad • Al-Ma’mun’s Later pro-Alid Policies • Later Shiite Responses • The Pilgrimage to Mashhad • Science and Rationalism • The Ancient Scientific Legacy • The Translation Movement • Measuring the Earth • Greek Medicine in Baghdad • The Book of Ingenious Devices • Breakthroughs in Mathematics • The Map of the World • Hostility to the Literalists • Defender of the Faith • Recentralization and the New Military • The Byzantine Campaigns • The dome of the rock • Provoking the Literalists • The Inquisition • The Scholar’s Resist • The Death of al-Ma’mun • The Inquisition After al-Ma’mun • The Historical Significance of the Inquisition

Details of the book

Book :
Al Ma’ mun (Makers of the Muslim World)
Book ID :
87578
Author :
Michael Cooperson
ISBN 13 :
9781851683864
Year of Publication :
2006
Publisher :
Oneworld/Viva Books Private Limited
Binding :
Hardcover
Pages :
164
Weight :
1 kg

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