Jokha Alharthi re-appraises the relationship between love, poetry and Arab society in the 8th to 11th centuries. She avoids clichés about the purity of love in 'Udhri poetry, instead questioning the traditional emphasis on chastity and the assumption that this poetry omits any concept of the body.
The main body of the present book is a presentation of 62 Arabic poems in the original from the 7th century of the work of Qays b. al-Mulawwah (d. 688), also known as Majnun Leyla "the one who was mad about Leyla." Each Arabic poem has an English translation on the facing page. The English text has footnotes referring to comments that are placed at the end of the work. The poems tell the story of Qays' love to his cousin, Leyla bint Mahd y (d. 688), better known as Leyla al-Amir ya, and provide insights into themes that were prevalent in the ashar al-ghazal al-udhr "platonic or virginal love poems" during the Ummayad era and onwards. A consuming passion emerges from the versions that have inspired countless of people more than 1200 years ago and throughout the centuries. About the Author: Joyce Akesson has studied the Semitic languages at Lund's University, Sweden and has previously been a lecturer there during many years. She is the author of several books about foreign linguistics, among which "Causes and Principles in Arabic," "Arabic Proverbs and Wise Sayings," "A Study of Arabic Phonology," "The Basics & Intricacies of Arabic Morphology," "The Phonological Changes due to the Hamza and Weak Consonant in Arabic," "A Study of the Assimilation and Substitution in Arabic," "The Essentials of the Class of the Strong Verb in Arabic," "The Complexity of the Irregular Verbal and Nominal Forms & the Phonological Changes in Arabic," "Arabic Morphology and Phonology based on the Marah" and "Ahmad b. Ali b. Masud on Arabic Morphology, Part One: The Strong Verb." She has also published several articles about Arabic linguistics in two Journals, the Journal of Arabic Linguistics (the ZAL or Zeitschrift fur Arabische Linguistik) Wiesbaden, and the previous Acta Orientalia, Denmark. She has also written a lemma about sarf "morphology/phonology in the Encyclopaedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics, vol. 4. Leiden: Brill, 20. She is also the author of three books of poems "Love's Thrilling Dimensions," "The Invitation" and "Majnun Leyla: Poems about Passion."
This work deals extensively with the Arabic themes and literary devices used by Hebrew Andalusian poets in 11th century Muslim (and Christian) Spain. Special interest is devoted to the four main poets of the Hebrew Golden Age in Spain, namely Samuel Ha-Nagid, Solomon Ibn Gabirol, Moses Ibn Ezra and Yehuda Ha-Lewi.
This translation of Nizar Kabbani's poetry is accompanied by the striking Arabic texts of the poems, penned by Kabbani especially for this collection. Kabbani was a poet of great simplicity - direct, spontaneous, musical, using the language of everyday life. He was a ceasless campaigner for women's rights, and his verses praise the beauty of the female body, and of love. He was an Arab nationalist, yet he criticized Arab dictators and the lack of freedom in the Arab world.
As the distinctive contribution of Islamic Spain to Arabic literature, the strophic muwashshahand zajal are still viewed by some as a development from putative Romance prototypes. No less than seven theories of origin of the Provençal lyrics have been proffered, foremost among them being the Arabic origins theory. This book lets the strophic muwashshah tell its own tale of a natural development in the context of classical Arabic literature.
Arabic and Hebrew Love Poems in al-Andalus investigates a largely overlooked subset of Muslim and Jewish love poetry in medieval Spain: hetero- and homo-erotic love poems written by Muslim and Jewish religious scholars, in which the lover and his sensual experience of the beloved are compared to scriptural characters and storylines. This book examines the ways in which the scriptural referents fit in with, or differ from, the traditional Andalusian poetic conventions. The study then proceeds to compare the scriptural stories and characters as presented in the poems with their scriptural and exegetical sources. This new intertextual analysis reveals that the Jewish and Muslim scholar-poets utilized their sacred literature in their poems of desire as more than poetic ornamentation; in employing Qur’ānic heroes in their secular verses, the Muslim poets presented a justification of profane love and sanctification of erotic human passions. In the Hebrew lust poems, which utilize biblical heroes, we can detect subtle, subversive, and surprisingly placed interpretations of biblical accounts. Moving beyond the concern with literary history to challenge the traditional boundaries between secular and religious poetry, this book provides a new, multidisciplinary, approach to existing materials and will be of interest to students, scholars and researchers of Islamic and Jewish Studies as well as to those with an interest in Hebrew and Arabic poetry of Islamic Spain.
Arabic culture was a central and shaping phenomenon in medieval Europe, yet its influence on medieval literature has been ignored or marginalized for the last two centuries. In this ground-breaking book, now returned to print with a new afterword by the author, María Rosa Menocal argues that major modifications of the medieval canon and its literary history are necessary. Menocal reviews the Arabic cultural presence in a variety of key settings, including the courts of William of Aquitaine and Frederick II, the universities in London, Paris, and Bologna, and Cluny under Peter the Venerable, and she examines how our perception of specific texts including the courtly love lyric and the works of Dante and Boccaccio would be altered by an acknowledgment of the Arabic cultural component.
The idea of this book goes back to the author's college days in the Department of Foreign Languages in Baghdad, where he learned that English poetry developed under the influence of foreign types of poetry, including classical, medieval, and Renaissance. He began to wonder whether Arabic poetry had a role in that development, especially in the love lyric, its main aspect. He researched during a sabbatical year in 1971-1972 in Cambridge, UK, and collected more material during summer vacations and conferences in Europe. By 2010, he had enough material to write this book and a probable second edition. The book covers European poetry in the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance, especially the rise of the first poetry in non-Latin, and on non-ecclesiastical subjects as seen in the love lyrics of the troubadours. The 12th-century troubadour love lyric shows a clear influence of Arabic-Andalusian poetry, especially the new and non-European attitude to love and women. This new poetry spread to Sicily, Italy, and was popularized by Dante and his disciples. A further development reached England in the 16th century, best represented by Shakespeare. '
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The civilisation of medieval Muslim Spain is perhaps the most brilliant and prosperous of its age and has been essential to the direction which civilisation in medieval Europe took. This volume is the first ever in any language to deal in a really comprehensive manner with all major aspects of Islamic civilisation in medieval Spain.
This provocative collection addresses the ways in which Arab women writers are using Islam to empower themselves, and theorizes the conditions that have made the appearance of these new voices possible.
This is the first comprehensive and comparative study of compositional and stylistic techniques in medieval Arabic and Persian lyric poetry. Ranging over some seven countries, it deals with works by over thirty poets in the Islamic world from Spain to present-day Afghanistan, and examines how this rich poetic traditions exhibits both continuity and development in the use of a wide variety of compositional strategies. Discussing such topics as principles of structural organisation, the use of rhetorical figures, metaphor and images, and providing detailed analyses of a large number of poetic texts, it shows how structural and semantic features interacted to bring coherence and meaning to the individual poem. It also examines works by the indigenous critics of poetry in both Arabic and Persian, and demonstrates the critics' awareness of, and interest in, the techniques which poets employed to construct poems which were both eloquent and meaningful. Comparisons are also made with classical and medieval poetics in the west. The book will be of interest not merely to specialists in the relevant fields, but also to all those interested in pre-modern poetry and poetics.
This history of literary Arabic describes the evolution of Arabic poetry and prose in the context of music, ritual performance, the arts and architecture. The thousands-of-years-old language is perhaps more highly developed and refined than any other on earth. This book focuses on what is unique about Arabic compared to other major languages of the world (Greek, Latin, Hebrew, English and Spanish) and how the distinct characteristics of Arabic took shape at various points in its history. The book provides a cultural background for understanding social and political institutions and religious beliefs—more influenced by the rhythms and depths of poetic language than other cultures—in the Middle East today.
This is a compilation of poetry written by Arabic women poets from pre-Islamic times to the end of the Abbasid caliphate and Andalusia, and offers translations of over 200 poets together with literary commentary on the poets and their poetry. This critical anthology presents the poems of more than 200 Arabic women poets active from the 600s through the 1400s CE. It marks the first appearance in English translation for many of these poems. The volume includes biographical information about the poets, as well as an analysis of the development of women’s poetry in classical Arabic literature that places the women and the poems within their cultural context. The book fills a noticeable void in modern English-language scholarship on Arabic women, and has important implications for the fields of world and Arabic literature as well as gender and women’s studies. The book will be a fascinating and vital text for students and researchers in the fields of Gender Studies and Middle Eastern studies, as well as scholars and students of translation studies, comparative literature, literary theory, gender studies, Arabic literature, and culture and classics.
Die Reihe Islamkundliche Untersuchungen wurde 1969 im Klaus Schwarz Verlag begründet und hat sich zu einem der wichtigsten Publikationsorgane der Islamwissenschaft in Deutschland entwickelt. Die über 330 Bände widmen sich der Geschichte, Kultur und den Gesellschaften Nordafrikas, des Nahen und Mittleren Ostens sowie Zentral-, Süd- und Südost-Asiens.
Poets have always been the medium through which a culture talks of, and to, its gods. Now, in this learned but lively commentary, Peggy Rosenthal shows us the astonishing range of poetic encounters with Jesus. With a special emphasis on twentieth-century poetry, Rosenthal draws from an unprecedented range of world poetry--from Africa, the Arab world, and the Far East to Latin America and the West--to give readers an understanding of how different times and different cultures have affected the way poets refigure Jesus and of how poets' fascination with the man from Nazareth transcends all barriers. She also demonstrates that, despite the twentieth century's self-definition as a secular and post-Christian epoch, it has produced poetry about Jesus of truly surprising quality and variety. Impeccably researched and extremely accessible, The Poets Jesus will strongly appeal to scholars of poetry and religion as well as for all general readers of poetry.
Over the past decade, scholars have vigorously reconsidered the history of Orientalism, and though Edward Said's hugely influential work remains a touchstone of the discussion, Karla Mallette notes, it can no longer be taken as the final word on Western perceptions of the Islamic East. The French and British Orientalisms that Said studied in particular were shaped by the French and British colonial projects in Muslim regions; nations that did not have such investments in the Middle East generated significantly different perceptions of Islamic and Arabic culture. European Modernity and the Arab Mediterranean examines Orientalist philological scholarship of southern Europe produced between the mid-nineteenth and mid-twentieth century. In Italy, Spain, and Malta, Mallette argues, a regional history of Arab occupation during the Middle Ages gave scholars a focus different from that of their northern European colleagues; in studying the Arab world, they were not so much looking on a distant and radically different history as seeking to reconstruct the past of their own nations. She demonstrates that in specific instances, Orientalists wrote their nations' Arab history as the origin of modern national identity, depicting Islamic thought not as exterior to European modernity but rather as formative of and central to it. Joining comparative insights to the analytic strategies and historical genius of philology, Mallette ranges from the complex manuscript history of the Thousand and One Nights to the invention of the Maltese language and Spanish scholarship on Dante and Islam. Throughout, she reveals the profound influences Arab and Islamic traditions have had on the development of modern European culture. European Modernity and the Arab Mediterranean is an engaging study that sheds new light on the history of Orientalism, the future of philology, and the postcolonial Middle Ages.