Crisis and Continuity at the Abbasid Court: Formal and Informal Politics in the Caliphate of al-Muqtadir (295-320/908-32) (Islamic History and Civiliz

Crisis and Continuity at the Abbasid Court: Formal and Informal Politics in the Caliphate of al-Muqtadir (295-320/908-32) (Islamic History and Civiliz

By: Nadia Maria El Cheikh (author), Hugh Kennedy (author), Maaike van Berkel (author), Letizia Osti (author)Hardback

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The reign of al-Muqtadir (295-320/908-32) is a crucial and controversial epoch in the history of the Abbasid empire. Al-Muqtadir's regime has traditionally been depicted as one of decline, when the political power of the caliphate and the lustre of its capital began to crumble. This book not only offers a substantial investigation of the idea and reality of decline, but also provides new interpretations of the inner workings of the court and the empire. The authors, four specialists of Abbasid history, explore the formal and informal power relationships that shaped politics at the court, involving bureaucrats, military, harem, courtiers and of course al-Muqtadir himself. A study of the topography of Baghdad completes this vivid picture of the court and its capital.

About Author

Maaike van Berkel, Ph.D. (Amsterdam, 2003) is Associate Professor of Medieval History at the University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on communication, court and urban history in the medieval Middle Eastern world. Nadia Maria El Cheikh is Professor of History at the American University of Beirut. Her book, Byzantium Viewed by the Arabs, was published in 2004. Her other main areas of research are gender history and court history in the Abbasid period. Hugh Kennedy studied for his MA and Ph.D. at Cambridge and taught at the University of St Andrews from 1972 to 2007, becoming Professor of Middle Eastern History. From 2007 he has been Professor of Arabic at SOAS, University of London. Letizia Osti, Ph.D. (St Andrews, 2002) is Ricercatore in Lingua e Letteratura Araba at the University of Milan. Her work focuses on classical Arabic prose and narrative techniques in biographical collections, historiography, literature and intersections thereof.


Introduction Time line Map of caliphate Part I 1. The Reign of al-Muqtadir (295-320/908-32): A History, Hugh Kennedy 2. The Caliph, Letizia Osti Part II 3. The Vizier, Maaike van Berkel 4. The Bureaucracy, Maaike van Berkel 5. The Military, Hugh Kennedy Part III 6. The Chamberlains, Nadia Maria El Cheikh 7. The Harem, Nadia Maria El Cheikh 8. Culture, Education and the Court, Letizia Osti General Conclusion Appendix: Baghdad at the Time of al-Muqtadir, Judith Ahola and Letizia Osti Bibliography Index

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9789004252714
  • Format: Hardback, Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 262
  • ID: 9789004252714
  • weight: 554
  • ISBN10: 9004252711

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