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A History of Islamic Societies

3rd Edition


  • Date Published: January 2015
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521732970

£ 48.99

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About the Authors
  • This new edition of one of the most widely used course books on Islamic civilizations around the world has been substantially revised to incorporate the new scholarship and insights of the last twenty-five years. Ira Lapidus' history explores the beginnings and transformations of Islamic civilizations in the Middle East and details Islam's worldwide diffusion. The history is divided into four parts. Part I is a comprehensive account of pre-Islamic late antiquity; the beginnings of Islam; the early Islamic empires; and Islamic religious, artistic, legal and intellectual cultures. Part II deals with the construction in the Middle East of Islamic religious communities and states to the fifteenth century. Part III includes the history to the nineteenth century of Islamic North Africa and Spain; the Ottoman, Safavid and Mughal empires; and other Islamic societies in Asia and Africa. Part IV accounts for the impact of European commercial and imperial domination on Islamic societies and traces the development of the modern national state system and the simultaneous Islamic revival from the early nineteenth century to the present.

    • Provides a comprehensive account of all the major Islamic societies from their beginnings in Arabia
    • Allows readers to understand these societies in relation to each other and other societies
    • Organized in narrative sections corresponding to the history of each major region
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    Reviews & endorsements

    Review of previous edition: 'This book is a major undertaking and deserves to be saluted as an outstanding achievement. Professor Lapidus' A History of Islamic Societies belongs to a rare breed of works.' World Quarterly

    Review of previous edition: 'I do not think that any other world civilization can boast a comparable general account of such substance and quality. … This is a great deal more than a textbook. It is a product of learning, intellect and style of an extremely high order.' Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society

    Review of previous edition: 'The value of A History of Islamic Societies lies in its sheer comprehensiveness. In one volume a vast amount of material is synthesized and presented in a clear and effective style. There is nothing else like it.' The Journal of Asian Studies

    Review of previous edition: 'Lapidus is concerned not with defining an essential Islam, but rather with mapping the role of Islamic beliefs, institutions and identities in particular historical contexts.' International Journal of Middle East Studies

    Review of previous edition: 'Ira Lapidus' A History of Islamic Societies has served students for twenty-five years as an accessible but thorough introduction to the full sweep of Islamic history. The book provides a powerful comparative framework for appreciating both diversity and continuity in Islamic historical experience.' Islam and Christian–Muslim Relations

    Review of previous edition: 'By this singular work Lapidus, Professor Emeritus of History at the University of California, Berkeley, has … placed himself in the recording of Islamic history on a pedestal equivalent to Gibbon's for that of Rome.' The Book Review Literary Trust, New Delhi

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    Product details

    • Edition: 3rd Edition
    • Date Published: January 2015
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521732970
    • length: 1017 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 177 x 38 mm
    • weight: 1.59kg
    • contains: 42 b/w illus. 39 maps 19 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction to Islamic societies
    Part I. The Beginnings of Islamic Civilizations:
    1. Middle Eastern societies before Islam
    2. Historians and the sources
    3. Arabia
    4. Muhammad: preaching, community, and state formation
    5. Introduction to the Arab-Muslim empires
    6. The Arab-Muslim conquests and the socioeconomic bases of empire
    7. Regional developments: economic and social change
    8. The Caliphate to 750
    9. The 'Abbasid Empire
    10. Decline and fall of the 'Abbasid Empire
    11. Introduction: religion and identity
    12. The ideology of imperial Islam
    13. The 'Abbasids: Caliphs and emperors
    14. Introduction
    15. Sunni Islam
    16. Shi'i Islam
    17. Muslim urban societies to the tenth century
    18. The non-Muslim minorities
    19. Continuity and change in the historic cultures of the Middle East
    Part II. From Islamic Community to Islamic Society:
    20. The Post- 'Abbasid Middle Eastern state system
    21. Muslim communities and Middle Eastern societies:
    1000–1500 CE
    22. The collective ideal
    23. The personal ethic
    24. Conclusion: Middle Eastern Islamic patterns
    Part III. The Global Expansion of Islam from the Seventh to the Nineteenth Century:
    25. Introduction: Islamic institutions
    26. Islamic North Africa to the thirteenth century
    27. Spanish-Islamic civilization
    28. Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco from the thirteenth to the nineteenth centuries
    29. States and Islam: North African variations
    30. Introduction: empires and societies
    31. The Turkish migrations and the Ottoman Empire
    32. The postclassical Ottoman Empire: decentralization, commercialization, and incorporation
    33. The Arab provinces under Ottoman rule
    34. The Safavid Empire
    35. The Indian subcontinent: the Delhi Sultanates and the Mughal Empire
    36. Islamic empires compared
    37. Inner Asia from the Mongol conquests to the nineteenth century
    38. Islamic societies in Southeast Asia
    39. The African context: Islam, slavery, and colonialism
    40. Islam in Sudanic, Savannah, and forest West Africa
    41. The West African Jihads
    42. Islam in East Africa and the European colonial empires
    43. The varieties of Islamic societies
    44. The global context
    Part IV. The Modern Transformation:
    45. Introduction: imperialism, modernity, and the transformation of Muslim societies
    46. The dissolution of the Ottoman empire and the modernization of Turkey
    47. Iran: state and religion in the modern era
    48. Egypt: secularism and Islamic modernity
    49. The Arab east: Arabism, military states, and Islam
    50. The Arabian peninsula
    51. North Africa in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
    52. Women in the Middle East:
    19th–21st centuries
    53. Muslims in Russia, the Caucasus, Inner Asia, and China
    54. The Indian subcontinent: India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh
    55. Islam in Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines
    56. Islam in West Africa
    57. Islam in East Africa
    58. Universal Islam and African diversity
    59. Muslims in Europe and America
    Conclusion: secularized Islam and Islamic revival.

  • Author

    Ira M. Lapidus, University of California, Berkeley
    Ira M. Lapidus is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of California, Berkeley. Throughout his long and illustrious career he has published extensively. His abiding interest has been the relationships among families, tribes, religious communities, cities and states. This is exemplified in his current work and previous publications, including Muslim Cities in the Later Middle Ages (1967, 1984), Middle Eastern Cities (edited, 1969), Contemporary Islamic Movements in Historical Perspective (1983), Islam, Politics and Social Movements, co-edited with Edmund Burke (1988), A History of Islamic Societies (1988, 2002), and Islamic Societies to the Nineteenth Century: A Global History (2012).

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