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Shi'i Scholars of Nineteenth-Century Iraq : The 'Ulama' of Najaf and Karbala' - Meir Litvak

Shi'i Scholars of Nineteenth-Century Iraq

The 'Ulama' of Najaf and Karbala'

Hardcover Published: 28th July 1998
ISBN: 9780521623568
Number Of Pages: 272

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In the nineteenth century, the shrine cities of Najaf and Karbala in Ottoman Iraq emerged as the most important Shi'i centres of learning. In a major contribution to the study of pre-modern Middle Eastern religious institutions, Meir Litvak analyses the social and political dynamics of these communities. Tracing the historical evolution of Shi'i leadership, he explores the determinants of social status amongst the ulama, the concept of patronage, the structure of learning, questions of ethnicity, and financial matters. He also assesses the role of the ulama as communal leaders who, in the face of a hostile Sunni government in Baghdad, were often obliged to adopt a more quietest political stance than their counterparts in Iran. This is an important book which sheds light on the formation of contemporary Shi'ism and the surrounding debates.

Industry Reviews

"Litvak has made an important and original contribution to our understanding of nineteenth-century Iraqi Shi'ism, and alo to the relations of the shrine cities with both Istanbul and Tehran...I learned a great deal from this balanced, nuanced, and carefully argued book." MESA Bulletin, Peter Sluglett, University of Utah

The Community: Learning and Leadership
The community of learning: concept and organization
Leadership in the age of multiple centers
Monopolization of leadership in Najaf
Diffusion, centralization and politicization
Determinants of status and leadership
The Ulama Between the Ottomans and Qajars
The shrine cities, the Mamluks and Iran
The Ulama and the reassertion of direct Ottoman control
The Ulama and Ottoman centralization policy
The changing political triangle, 1875-1904
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521623568
ISBN-10: 0521623561
Series: Cambridge Middle East Studies
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 272
Published: 28th July 1998
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.57