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Introduction to Ibn Khaldun

Introduction to Ibn Khaldun

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Introduction to Ibn Khaldun

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  1. Introduction to Ibn Khaldun Carl Ernst Introduction to Islamic Civilization

  2. Notes on Bruce Lawrence’s Introduction “What distinguished Ibn Khaldun was neither his Arab lineage nor his linkage to Berbers via marriage but his Mediterranean location…. [he was] heir to Greek science and Arab poetry” (vii) Toynbee: “undoubtedly the greatest work of its kind that has ever yet been created by any mind in any time or place” (A Study of History)

  3. Structure Muqaddima or Introduction Book of Admonitions [Warnings] (Kitab al-`ibar), a history of dynasties of North Africa Autobiography: Information on Ibn Khaldun and his Journey (rihla) in West and East

  4. Key terms `Asabiyya or “group feeling” (nowadays used as an Arabic translation of French fanatisme) Badawa or nomadic lifestyle (of Bedouin) `Umran or city life, i.e., civilization in the generic sense, also called hadara Mubtada` or grammatical subject Khabar or grammatical predicate Mutabaqa or conformity with experience

  5. Outline of the Muqaddima (Part 1) On human civilization and the part of the earth that is civilized On desert civilization among tribes and savage nations On dynasties, caliphate, & royal authority On sedentary civilization, countries, cities On crafts and ways of making a living On sciences, their acquisition and study

  6. Full title of part 2 Kitab al-`ibar Wa diwan al-mubtada` wal-khabar Fi Ayyam al-`Arab wal-`Ajam wal-Barbar Wa-man `asarahum min dhawi as-sultan al-akbar The Book of Lessons and Archive of Early and Subsequent History, Dealing with Political Events Concerning Arabs, non-Arabs, and Berbers, and their Contemporary Supreme Rulers

  7. Major question: audience Multiple audiences? Muqaddima as intended for an elite circle, with the history (Book of Admonitions) aimed at a wider audience (xiii, note 12)