Al-Jahiz: In Praise of Books

Al-Jahiz: In Praise of Books

by James Montgomery
     
 

Introduces the writings and 'Abbasid-period textual world of Al-Jahiz, the "father of Arabic prose". Al-Jahiz was a bibliomaniac, theologian, and spokesman for the political and cultural elite, a writer who lived, counselled and wrote in Iraq during the first century of the 'Abbasid caliphate. He advised, argued and rubbed shoulders with the major power

Overview

Introduces the writings and 'Abbasid-period textual world of Al-Jahiz, the "father of Arabic prose". Al-Jahiz was a bibliomaniac, theologian, and spokesman for the political and cultural elite, a writer who lived, counselled and wrote in Iraq during the first century of the 'Abbasid caliphate. He advised, argued and rubbed shoulders with the major power brokers and leading religious and intellectual figures of his day, and crossed swords in debate and argument with the architects of the Islamic religious, theological, philosophical and cultural canon. His many, tumultuous writings engage with these figures, their ideas, theories and policies. They give us an invaluable but much-neglected window onto the values and beliefs of this cosmopolitan elite.Edinburgh University Press will publish two self-contained guides to reading al-Jahiz that also shed light on his society and its writings.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I recommend this book to serious seekers of al-Jahiz, especially graduate students who would like to benefit from Montgomery's scholarship as those students at the University of Cambridge have done over the years, and for whom major parts of it were written in the first place." — Issa J. Boullata, McGill University, Review of Middle East Studies

"There is more translation of The Book of the Living here than ever been in English, in itself making it a worthy contribution to the field thirsty for such material, but it is the extensive commentary and explication of the argument which make the work so impressive. Cross-referencing shows a deep familiarity with all seven volumes of The Book of the Living and the rest of the Jahizian corpus." — Lydia Wilson, The Times Literary Supplement


Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780748683321
Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
Publication date:
12/30/2013
Pages:
448
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.60(d)

Meet the Author

James Montgomery is The Sir Thomas Adams's Professor of Arab at the University of Cambridge

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