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One Thousand Roads to Mecca Hardcover – 31 Dec 1997

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press (31 Dec. 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802116116
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802116116
  • Product Dimensions: 3.8 x 15.9 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,450,528 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


"A tradition of Muslim writing aimed at the insiders and out." "The Boston Globe" "Wolfe does an exemplary job of detailing the ceremonies performed at Mecca and the reasons behind them. The chosen excerpts give the readers a sense of how the hajj has changed over time as well as how constant the central ceremonies have remained. Highly recommended." "Library Journal" (starred review) "A first-rate addition to a spiritual library." "Los Angeles Times" "Serves as an excellent introduction to a religion, people, culture, and philosophy." "Santa Cruz Sentinel"" --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Michael Wolfe is the author of eleven books of poetry, fiction, and travel. In 1990, he made the pilgrimage to Mecca and subsequently wrote two books on the subject, "The Hadj: An American s Pilgrimage to Mecca" and "One Thousand Roads to Mecca: Ten Centuries of Travelers Writing about the Muslim Pilgrimage." For 15 years he was the publisher of Tombouctou Books. He is currently Co-Executive Producer and President of Unity Productions Foundation, a nonprofit media company that produces documentary films for television." --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
The Persian Naser-e Khosraw (1003-1077), the Iberian Ibn Jubayr (1145-1217), and the Moroccan Ibn Battuta (1303 or 1304-1368 or 1369) were all civil servants, educated men, and devout Muslims. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By SR on 8 July 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A fantastic read, which not only describes the geographical, physical and ritualistics aspects of the Hajj, but also the inner soul ("heart_mind set") of those inspired to go on the Hajj.

It offers up some surprisies - like the city in which teh ruler has derceed that there is no need for the Muslims in his kingdom to pray, or the town where the young men shave their eyebrows (to this day apparently) after a famous local saint used this ploy to defend his honour.

It also recounts stories of interaction with westerners, from simple story of a freed English slave, to the British commanders involved in the attacks by the Saudi hordes against holy cities, insights into the crumbling Ottoman empire and of course perhaps the most famous account of Hajj busy Haji Malik Al-Shabaz aka Malcolm X. These hordes feature prominantly throughout the book as they present the constant threat of being robbed and left to die to those travelling to teh Hajj.

Whilst no doubt these apsects of the book have that "wow" factor, it is the simple accounts that shed light onto what is in the hearts of simple Haji's that is most striking - a desire to please their Lord.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David Millar on 3 Feb. 2012
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book to help me with my degree and I found it very useful. It provides a decent array of sources and picks excellent extracts from them. If you are looking to get a feel for what the pilgrimage to Mecca was like for these authors then this is a great way to do so whilst saving a lot of money buying them separately.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
For All Hajjis and Hajjis to be. 16 Feb. 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Michael Wolfe is an excellent writer. He is also a very convincing writer. For years my parents have been asking me to go for Hajj. I compromised and went for Umra. Mr. Wolfe's preface and the introduction convinced me that I should make this journey. I am preparing for the trip in year 2003. Inshallah.
This is an excellent book. Equally enlighting to Muslims and Non-Muslim. I recommend it.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Amazing feast of insight and history of the hajj 27 May 2006
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This is easily one of the most splendid and accessible

English-language works on the hajj in recent years. For Muslims about to undertake the hajj, Wolfe's thousand-year history of the great hajj narratives of men like ibn Jubayr and years later Malcolm X will offer the richness of the pilgrimage, which was often as much a picaresque travel adventure as spiritual rite. Non-Muslims will get a great swath of Muslim intellectual history, freed of the sometimes needless formalism and apologia of recent hajj narratives and a wonderful encapsulation of Islamic civilization at its height, and of course the great beauty of the pilgrimage itself. Wolfe's introductions to the many narratives serve, perhaps unintentionally, as an excellent summary of Muslim history to the present.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
It was wonderful! 4 April 2000
By Jasen - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I found this book to be wonderful. I enjoyed it alot. It really has showen change in the pilgrimage. I would recomend the book for Muslims, like my self and non- Muslims alike.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A really beautiful idea for an anthology 6 Dec. 2006
By Munir - Published on
Format: Paperback
The scope of this book is incredible spanning nearly 1000 years of people making a pilgrimage. It also demonstrates how life-changing the experience could be. Michael Wolfe is a great writer and does a splendid job introducing each piece. Some of participants are simply incredible people- especially the Spanish Muslim from the 1700s (my memory escapes me as to his names). Each piece shows something new. Its definitely a book I'll be looking into again.
Five Stars 31 July 2014
By John Healey - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An amazing chronical of the battle to reach Mecca.

Highly recommend.
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