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The Idea of Idolatry and the Emergence of Islam : From Polemic to History - G. R. Hawting

The Idea of Idolatry and the Emergence of Islam

From Polemic to History

By: G. R. Hawting, David Morgan (Editor)

Hardcover Published: 28th January 2000
ISBN: 9780521651653
Number Of Pages: 188

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Why and under what circumstances did the religion of Islam emerge in a remote part of Arabia at the beginning of the seventh century? Traditional scholarship maintains that Islam developed in opposition to the idolatrous and polytheistic religion of the Arabs of Mecca and the surrounding regions. In the first book-length study of pre-Islamic Arabian religion, G. R. Hawting adopts a comparative religious perspective to suggest an alternative view. By examining the various bodies of evidence which survive from this period, the Koran and the vast resources of the Islamic tradition, the author argues that in fact Islam arose out of conflict with other monotheists whose beliefs and practices were judged to fall short of true monotheism and were, in consequence, attacked polemically as idolatry. The author is adept at unravelling the complexities of the source material, and students and scholars will find his argument both engaging and persuasive.

Industry Reviews

'Never before has anyone shown with such clarity how little the so-called polytheism described in the Quran has to do with the Arabian paganism described in the tradition.' Times Literary Supplement 'I find Hawting's book very inspiring ... no future scholar working with pre-Islamic times can afford to overlook Hawting's book which provides a whetstone for anyone trying to write a more positivistic analysis of pre-Islamic religion.' Acta Orientalia 'Hawting carries forward his argument in closely argued prose which is throughout fully alert to scholarship in Arabic and in European languages that relates to his case.' Bulletin of the School of Oriental & African Studies

Note on transliteration and dates
List of abbreviations
Religion in the jahiliyya: theories and evidence
Idols and idolatry in the Koran
Shirk and idolatry in monotheist polemic
The tradition
Names, tribes and places
The daughters of God
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521651653
ISBN-10: 0521651654
Series: Cambridge Studies in Islamic Civilization
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 188
Published: 28th January 2000
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.8 x 15.2  x 1.4
Weight (kg): 0.45