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Islamic History: A New Interpretation: AD.600-750 (A.H.132) v. 1 Paperback – 14 Oct 1976

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Product Description

Book Description

Based on original sources and challenging many received opinions, this book presents for the first time a clear narrative analysis of the central events of the Islamic domains between the rise of the Abbasids and the Salijuq invasion.

About the Author

Shaban is Reader in Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter.

Shaban is Reader in Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa0ede6fc) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0f352ac) out of 5 stars Islamic History - A New Interpretation 24 Jan. 2000
By Loren Ray Wallen - Published on
Shaban's work focuses primarily on the economic factors which influenced early Islamic history. He re-examines such well studied topics as the reasons behind Medina's acceptance of Mohammad (and his followers) leadership and the deaths of Ali, Hasan & Hussain through an economic rather than a theological lense. Accordingly, he stresses throughout his work that the spread of Islam outside the Arabian peninsula was far more a result of economic necessity than religious zeal.
Shaban's work is perhaps most accesible when he focuses on the very early period of the Prophet and the rightly guided Caliphs. As he moves into the early Ummayad period the work becomes rather dense and somewhat difficult to follow. None the less, his observations on the respective geopolitical positions of Syria, Arabia, and Mesopotamia (present day Iraq) during the period when Islam was expanding outside of the peninsula, whatever the reasons, are fascinating and go a long way in answering questions about the Middle East as it stands today.
Shaban's work can best be appreciated by someone who is familier with "accepted" theories of Islamic history and yet is interested in a different yet highly plausible account of how the faith spread beyond its early converts.
HASH(0xa3cb4774) out of 5 stars A Non-Partisan Look at Early Islam 10 May 2015
By Rahallatun - Published on
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I have been wanting to read this work for many years and finally found the time. This book is not for the uninitiated in Islamic history. It presumes considerable knowledge of the events of early Islam. I have that background and I found the book highly readable to the point of having difficulty in putting it down. Shaban has an economic interpretation of events so he will not satisfy partisans of either a Sunni or Shi'a perspective. Because he relies on the same limited early Islamic resources (Tabari, Baladhuri) as everyone else, do not expect a lot of new information, but rather a fresh look at the available information attempting to separate it from clear prejudices within the source materials and from traditional narratives of Sunni and Shi'a. In Shaban's view, economics and tribal dynamics take precedence over religion in the spread of the Arabs and Islam. Because the source materials are limited I think Shaban makes a number of points only thinly supported by evidence...but I am not scholar so I can only surmise what those might be. Overall, I think he makes a strong case and one that cannot be ignored even if one does not fully accept his thesis.
3 of 24 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0f445f4) out of 5 stars The Agenda is Clear !! 15 Aug. 2000
By A. Raza - Published on
The agenda is quite clear - to mislead the people and to alleviate the status of those people who were clearly enemies of the mission of the Prophet of Islam. The author calls Muawiyah "a person of Hilm" and "indeed Ameerul Mumineen". I think it is sufficient to introduce Muawiyah as "son of Hinda" and somebody who fathered "Yazeed" Muawiyah was kind and forbearing only when he had to face a powerful person who, he feared, might curb his power and topple his government. If Anybody wants to learn about his treachery - he should study the terms of his agreement with Hasan ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib and see how much he remained faithful to the terms of the agreement. He was simply a power hungary politician. There are other better authors who have been quite neutral in judging about personalities.
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