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The Making of

the Islamic
World
600-1500
Spring 2015

Prof. Ali Yaycolu

ayayciog@stanford.edu
200-09

TA: Demetrius Loufas


loufas@stanford.edu

steppes; sultans and caliphs; formation of


the Islamic thought, legal culture and
religious institutions; trans-regional Sufi
and learned networks; family and
sexuality; urban, rural and nomadic life;
non-Muslim communities; the expansion
of the Mediterranean and Indian Ocean
trade; relations with Byzantium, the Latin
West, and the Mongols; the Crusades; the
rise of early modern empires.

T/Th, 14:15 to 15:45 at 160-325


Maqamat of al-Hariri, Paris, BNF Arabe 5847, dated 1237 CE

(Same as HISTORY 182C. Majors and other taking 5


units, register for 182C.)

This is a lecture course on the History of


Islam and Muslim peoples in the Medieval
Period. Topics include Muhammad, the
Quran and his community; the early Arab
conquests; Umayyad and Abbasid
Empires; sectarian movements; the Persian
and Turkic influence and peoples of the

Course Requirements:
LECTURES AND SECTIONS: The classes will be a combinaXon of lectures and secXon
discussions. Lectures take place on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. SecXon
discussions are on Monday and cover the material of the preceding week.
FIRST WEEK OF INSTRUCTION: In the rst week, schedule is dierent from the rest of
the quarter. Lectures take place on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. On Thursday,
students meet for the rst secXon, which will deal with organizaXonal ma`ers.
PREPARATION: Every week there are around 100 pages of text to be read by the
students. PreparaXon prior to class meeXngs is compulsory. PreparaXon includes reading
the assigned texts, taking notes, and formulaXng quesXons and thoughts for the secXon
discussion.
SECTION DISCUSSIONS: All students must a`end and contribute acXvely and
thoughbully to classroom discussions. Those students who are not comfortable speaking
in class can submit weekly reading responses. Please, talk to your TA about the
expectaXons of the response papers in advance.
QUIZZES AND WORKSHEET: SecXon discussions may include short quizzes on assigned
readings. Occasional worksheets may also be assigned for parXcular class days.
MIDTERMS and FINAL: There will be a take-home midterm and a take-home nal
examinaXon in this course. The examinaXons will be a combinaXon of short quesXons
and long essays.
BOOK-REPORT: Each student will write a short book review of Richard W. Bulliets
Co`on, Climate and Camels in Early Islamic Iran (New York, 2009) or another book of
that we can agree on (2000-2500 words/up to 5-6 pages).
SHORT STORY/IMAGINARY MEMOIR: If the students prefer, instead of book review, they
can write a short story or an imaginary memoir of a cXonal protagonist (2000-2500
words), in a context of one of the major incidents of Islamic History, by using primary
and secondary sources.
FILM SCREENING: In week 3, we will organize the screening of The Message (Akkad,
1977).
GRADING:
ParXcipaXon in discussion (incl. a map quiz)
Book Report or Short Story/Imaginary Memoir
Midterm examinaXon



Final examinaXon


20%
20%
30%
30%

BOOKS to be purchased
Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East,
600-1800 (Cambridge, 2011). (Available online)
Richard W. Bulliet, Co<on, Climate and Camels in Early Islamic Iran (New York, 2009).
Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers: At the Origins of Islam (Cambridge, MA, 2010).
Hugh Kennedy, When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World: The Rise and Fall of Islams
Greatest Dynasty (London, 2006).
Adam J. Silverstein, Islamic History: A Very Short History (Oxford, 2010).
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BOOKS RESERVED IN GREEN LIBRARY


Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates (London, 2004).
Ira M. Lapidus, A History of Islamic Socie*es (Cambridge, 2002).
David Morgan, Medieval Persia, 1040-1797 (London, 1988).
P. M. Holt, The Age of the Crusades: The Near East from the Eleventh Century to 1517
(London, 1986).
Bernard Lewis, The Assassins (New York, 2003).
Peter Slugle` with Andrew Currie, Atlas of Islamic History (London, 2015).
PRIMARY SOURCES
Most of the primary sources will be provided during the course of the quarter.
BOOKS AND ARTICLES ONLINE
histories.cambridge.org
h`p://www.jstor.org

SCHEDULE OF LECTURES
Week 1 (March 30 - April 2)

Romans, Persians, and Arabs


1. Approaches in Islamic History: Themes and Problems
- Adam J. Silverstein, Islamic History: A Very Short History (Oxford, 2010), pp.
80-107.
2. The Late An[quity Context: Romans, Persians and Arabs
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam (Cambridge, 2011), pp.10-53.
- Peter Brown, ChrisXanity in Asia and the Rise of Islam, in his The Rise of
Western Christendom (Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2003): 267-294.
Week 2 (April 7 and 9)

Muhammad, Quran, and Believers


1. Muhammad and Quran
- Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers: At the Origins of Islam (Cambridge,
MA, 2010), pp. 34-89.
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 57-69.
- Daniel Brown, A New Interpreta*on to Islam (London, 2003), pp. 53-68.
- Michael Cook, The Koran: A Very Short Introduc*on (Oxford, 200), 119-145.
h`p://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RFK5u5lkhA
2. Believers
- Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers, pp. 90-144.
Primary Sources
- Selected Suras from the Quran.
- Muhammads Call and First RevelaXon, Muhammads Night Journey, The
Farewell Pilgrimage, in F.E. Peters ed., A Reader on Classical Islam (Princeton,
1994), pp.50-1, 64-5, 94-5.
Recommended Addi[onal Readings
- Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates (London, 2004):
15-49.
- P. Crone, What do we actually know about Mohammed? found here:
h`p://www.opendemocracy.net/faith-europe_islam/mohammed_3866.jsp

Week 3 (April 14 and 16)


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Split, Empire, and Conquest


1. Split/Fitna
- Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers, pp. 145-193.
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 83-90.
- Hamid Dabashi, Shiism (Cambridge, 2011), pp. 47-100.
- Maria M. Dakake, The Charisma*c Community (Albany, 2007), pp. 71-99.
2. The Umayyad Empire and the Conquest
- Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers, pp. 194-224.
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 76-90.
- Fred Donner, The Early Islamic Conquest (Princeton, 1981), pp. 221-251.
(Online) h`p://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=acls;idno=heb00877
- Peter Brown, The Great TransiXon, New York Review of Books (May 10,
2012).
Primary Sources
- ConsXtuXon of Medina
- InscripXon in the Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem
(Both Available in the appendix of Fred Donner, Muhammad and Believers)
Recommended Addi[onal Readings
- Fred Donner, The FormaXon of the Islamic State (JSTOR)
- Hugh Kennedy, The Great Arab Conquests (Philadelphia, 2007), pp. 66-138.
(Online) h`p://site.ebrary.com/lib/stanford/docDetail.acXon?
docID=10263788
- M. Momen, An Introduc*on to Shii Islam: The History and Doctrines of
Twelver Shiism (New Haven/London, 1985), pp. 11-22.
MOVIE SHOW: THE MESSAGE, by M. Akkad (1977) (April 16)
Week 4 (April 21 and 23)

Revolu[on, Khorasanians, and Turks


1. The Abbasid Revolu[on and Empire


- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 102-110
- Hugh Kennedy, When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World, pp. 1-84, 112-129 or
130-159

2. The Khorasanis and Turks in the Abbasid Empire


- Roy Mo`ahedeh The Shu'ubiyah Controversy and the Social History of Early
Islamic Iran Interna*onal Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, vol. 7 (1976), pp.
161-182. (Available in JSTOR).
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S. Frederick Starr, Lost Enlightenment: Central Asias Golden Age from the
Arab Conquest to Tamerlane (Princeton, 2013), pp. 303-331.
Peter B. Golden, The Turks: A Historical Overview, in D. J. Roxburgh ed.,
Turks: A Journey of a Thousand Years (London, 2005), pp. 18-31.

Primary Sources
- Hugh Kennedy, When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World, pp. 112-129
- al-Jahiz, The PeculiariXes of the Turks, in S. C. Levi and R. Sela eds., Islamic
Central Asia: An Anthology of Historical Sources (Indiana, 2010), pp. 55-58.
Recommended Addi[onal Readings
- Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates (London, 2004),
pp. 123-197.
Week 5 (April 28 and 30)

Deserts, Steppes, and Oceans


1. Shiism, Steppes and the Crisis of the Abbasid Empire
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 124-140.
- Hugh Kennedy, When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World, pp. 200-242.

2. Peoples, Climates and Geographies of the Islamic World


- Adam Silverstein, Islamic History: A Very Short Introduc*on, pp. 49-62.
- Zayde Antrim, Routes & Realms: The Power of Place in the Early Islamic World
(Oxford, 2013), pp. 87-107.
- H. Park, Mapping the Chinese and Islamic Worlds (Cambridge, 2012), pp.
56-90.
- G. F. Hourani, Arab Seafaring (Princeton, 1951), pp. 51-86.
- Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates, pp. 198-209.
- Mara Rosa Menocal, The Ornament of the World: How Muslims, Jews and
Chris*ans Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain (New York, 2002),
pp. 17-49.

Primary Sources
- Masudi, From the Meadows of Gold, Selected pages.

TAKE-HOME MIDTERM EXAMINATION (Submission Deadline: May 5)

Week 6 (Mary 5 and 7)

Sultans, Commanders, and Assassins


1. Shii Consolida[on: The Buyids, Fa[mids, the Assassins and others
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Bernard Lewis, The Assassins: A Radical Sect in Islam (New York, 1967), pp.
20-63.
Hamid Dabashi, Shiism (Cambridge, 2011), 103-131.

2. The Sunni Revival and the Seljuk Empire


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A. C. S. Peacock, The Great Seljuk Empire (Edinburgh, 2015), pp. 20-71,


124-155.
Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 189-202.
George Makdisi, The Sunni Revival, in D. S. Richards ed., Islamic Civiliza*on,
950-1150 (Oxford, 1973), pp. 155-168.

Primary Sources
- Nizam al-Milk, A Mirror for Princes (selected secXons) in S. C. Levi and R. Sela
eds., Islamic Central Asia: An Anthology of Historical Sources (Indiana, 2010),
pp.92-93.
Recommended Addi[onal Readings
- Roy Mo`ahedeh, Loyalty and Leadership in an Early Islamic Society
(Princeton, 1980), pp. 175-190.
- Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates (London, 2004),
pp. 210-246.
BOOK REVIEW
Richard W. Bulliet, Co<on, Climate and Camels in Early Islamic Iran (New York, 2009)
OR
SHORT STORY/IMAGINARY MEMOIR
(Submission Deadline May 7)
Week 7 (May 12 and 14)

Merchants, Peasants and Urbanites


1. Urban, Rural and Pastoral worlds


- Claude Cahen, Economy, Society and InsXtuXons, Cambridge History of
Islam, vol. 2B (Cambridge, 1970), pp. 511-28. (Available online).
- Hugh Kennedy, From Sharistan to Medina Studia Islamica, No. 102/103
(2006), pp. 5-34 (Available in JSTOR).
OR
- Hugh Kennedy, From Polis to Madina: Urban Change in Late AnXque and
Early Islamic Syria Past & Present, No. 106 (Feb., 1985), pp. 3-27 (Available in
JSTOR)
- A. K. S. Lambton, ReecXons on the Role of Agriculture in Medieval Persia,
in A. L. Udovitch ed.,The Islamic Middle East, 700-1900 (Princeton, 1981):
283-312.

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Janet L. Abu-Lughod, Before European Hegemony: The World System, A.D.


1250-1350 (Oxford, 1989), pp. 251-260.
Michael Peason, Islamic trade, shipping, port-states and merchant
communiXes in the Indian Ocean, seventh to sixteenth centuries in New
Cambridge History of Islam, vol. 3 (Cambridge, 2010), pp. 317-365. (Available
Online)

2. Women, Men, and Sexuality


- Leila Ahmed, Women and Gender in Islam (New Haven, 1992), pp. 41-62.
- Yasser Tabbaa, Dayfa Khtn, regent queen and architectural patron, in
Women, patronage, and self-representaXon in Islamic socieXes edited by D.
Fairchild Ruggles (Albany, 2000), pp. 17-34.
- Georey Lewis, Heroines and Others in the Heroic Age of the Turks, in G. R.
G. Hamby ed., Women in the Medieval Islamic World (New York, 1998), pp.
147-159.
Recommended Addi[onal Readings
- Hugh Kennedy, Journey to Mecca: A History, V. Porter ed., Hajj: Journey to
the Heart of Islam (London, 2012), pp. 69-135.
Primary Source
- al-Jahiz Man, Woman and Love
- Dede Korkut, SelecXons.
Week 8 (May 19 and 21)

Theologians, Jurists, and Sus


1. Islamic Theology, Philosophy and Law
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 141-151.
- Hossein Ziai Islamic Philosophy (falsafa), in Tim Winter ed., The Cambridge
Companion to Classical Islamic Theology (Cambridge, 2008), pp. 55-76.
- Wael B. Hallaq, Sharia, Theory, Prac*ce and Transforma*ons (Cambridge,
2009) pp. 27-71.
- Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 216-230.
2. The Islamic Mys[cism and Su Orders
- Jonathan Berkley, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 141-152.
- Ahmet Karamustafa, Gods Unruly Friends: Dervish Groups in the Islamic
Middle Period 1200-1550 (Oxford, 2006), pp. 1-38.
Discussion
- Shahzad Bashir, Su Bodies (New York, 2011).
Primary Sources

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Al-Nawawi, Al-Majmusharh al-Muhadhdhab, in Norman Calder et al. Classical


Islam: A Sourcebook of Religious Literature (Routledge, 2003), pp. 192-6.
Rabia: Her Words and Life in A`ars Memorial of the Friends of God, trans.
P.Losensky and M. Sells, in M. Sells ed. Early Islamic Mys*cism: Su, Quran,
Miraj, Poe*c and Theological Wri*ngs edited by, (NewYork/Mahwah, 1996),
pp. 151-170

Week 9 (May 26 and 28)

Dhimmis, Crusaders, and the Mongols


1. Non-Muslims in Islam
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Jonathan Berkey, The Forma*on of Islam, pp. 91-101, 159-175.


C. E. Bosworth, The Concept of dhimma in early Islam in Benjamin Braude
and Bernard Lewis (eds), Chris*ans and Jews in the O<oman Empire: The
Func*oning of a Plural Society, vol. 1 (New York, 1982), pp. 37-51.
K. A. Miller, Guardians of Islam: Religious Authority and Muslim Communi*es
of Late Medieval Spain (Columbia, 2008), pp. 1-58.

2. The Crusades and The Mongol Conquest


- P. M. Holt, The Age of the Crusades (London, 1986), pp. 16-37, 53-59.
- Jane Burbank and Frederick Cooper, Eurasian ConnecXons: The Mongol
Empires, in Empires in World History (Princeton, 2010), pp. 93-115.
Primary Sources
-
Usama ibn Munqidh, Book of ReecXon, Chapter 8: An AppreciaXon of the
Frankish Character.
- Al-Juwayn, The Il-Khan Hleg Captures the Castles if the HereXcs, in S. C.
Levi and R. Sela eds., Islamic Central Asia: An Anthology of Historical Sources
(Indiana, 2010), pp. 142-148.
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Grigor of Akanc, History of the NaXon of the Archers (The Mongols),
Harvard Journal of Asia*c Studies 12 No. 3/4 (Dec., 1949), pp. 269-399.

Week 10 (June 2 and 4).

Timurids, Mamluks and Okomans


1. The Rise of Early Modern Empires
- Stephen Dale, The Muslim Empires of the O<omans, Safavids, and Mughals
(Cambridge, 2010), Ch. 2 (Compulsory), pp. 48-76; Ch. 3 (Recommended), pp.
77-105.
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Primary Source
Ibn Khaldun, The Muqaddimah: An Introduc*on to History, translated by F.
Rosenthal (Princeton, 1967), chapter 3: On DynasXes, royal authority, the
caliphate..., pp. 123-154.

2. Global Early Modern Interac[ons


- Cemal Kafadar, The O`omans and Europe, in Thomas Brady Jr. et al.
Handbook of European History, 1400-1600, pp. 589-628.
TAKE-HOME FINAL EXAMINATION (TBA)

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