Jews, Visigoths and Muslims in Medieval Spain: Cooperation and Conflict

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Jews settled in medieval Spain at least by the third century, and under the Christian Visigoths (sixth to eighth centuries) suffered increasing hostility and persecution, from which they were saved by the Muslim invasion (711). This book details the relations between Jews and the Visigoths, and then with the Muslims both in Muslim Spain proper (al-Andalus) and in later Christian Spain to the fifteenth century. It examines both the positive and negative aspects of those relations, drawing on a variety of sources many of which are here utilized for the first time. Political, socio-economic, scientific, cultural, literary and even sexual aspects of the history of the interaction between Jews and Visigoths, and Jews and Muslims, provide hopefully a new insight into a period of great importance in history.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'The strength of the book lies in its fluent use of primary sources, demonstrating how judicious use of Hebrew Sources can sometimes enhance scant information contained in Arabic texts. The cultural and literary sections...strike this reviewer as the most valuable parts of this deeply learned and densely written tome.'
S.D. Benin, Social and Behavioral Sceinces, 1995.
Roth (Jewish history and medieval Hebrew literature, U. of Wisconsin, Madison) studies the relations of Jews with the Visigoths (sixth to eighth centuries), and then with the Muslims both in Muslim Spain proper and in later Christian Spain, to the 15th century. He deals with political, socio-economic, scientific, cultural, literary, and sexual aspects of the history, examining both positive and negative aspects of the relations and drawing on a variety of sources, many used here for the first time. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789004099715
  • Publisher: Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/1/1994
  • Series: Medieval Iberian Peninsula Series , #10
  • Pages: 367
  • Product dimensions: 6.46 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Meet the Author

Norman Roth, Ph.D. (Cornell, 1978), professor of Jewish history and medieval Hebrew literature and philosophy, University of Wisconsin (Madison). Author of many articles and books, including Maimonides. Essays and Texts (1985).
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
I The Jews in Visigothic Spain 7
Survey of the Literature 39
II Muslim Spain 41
Survey of the Literature 69
III Jews Under Umayyads and Taifas 73
IV Jews and Muslims Under Almoravids, Almohads and Christians 113
V Cities, Economy and Slavery 137
VI Jews and Muslims: Cooperation and Conflict 163
VII Jewish Polemic Against Islam 205
Survey of the Literature: Jews in Muslim Spain 231
Notes 235
Glossary 325
Abbreviations 327
Bibliography 331
General Index 345
Index of Words and Terms 366
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