Religion and Society in the Near East, | Berkey’s focus in The Formation of Islam is on ideas and institutions and their social and political context. Khalid Yahya Blankinship; Jonathan P. Berkey. The Formation of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East, – (Themes in Islamic. Berkey is an Associate Professor of History at Davidson College. He describes Islam as having developed across generations, and he writes of various religious .

Author: Gushicage Akikora
Country: Maldives
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Photos
Published (Last): 11 May 2014
Pages: 28
PDF File Size: 14.67 Mb
ePub File Size: 19.86 Mb
ISBN: 430-6-13101-340-9
Downloads: 50045
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Samuro

On the other hand, the con- fessional religions of late antiquity were by nature increasingly exclusive: The Transformation of a Culture Cambridge: A second point concerns the universalist character and claims of the religions of late antiquity. University of Michigan Press,5—6.

The formation of Islam: religion and society in the Near East, 600-1800

Ignatius, bishop of Antioch around the turn of the first century, composed letters condemning, not Jewish Christians, but Gentile Christians who adopted Jewish practices. One of the most important Jewish communities in the Mediterranean region was found in Egypt.

But there was a more explicit political dimension as well, since the Coun- cil also made it clear that Formatiin was to be regarded as the premier Christian city of the eastern Empire, to the detriment of the authority of the patriarchal sees of Antioch and, especially, Alexandria. Sufis themselves have traced, with sincere conviction, the intellectual descent of their principles and ideas back to the very earliest Muslims, including most importantly Ali ibn Abi Talib and the Prophet Muhammad himself.

The Formation of Islam | Jonathan Berkey –

The result is aimed most formatioon at those with some historical training, but should be accessible to lay readers already familiar with Islam and the region’s history.

To cite just one instance, one which may have been known to the emperor Constantine: At the time of the conversion of Constantine, perhaps half the inhabitants of Egypt professed Christianity; by the early fifth century, the figure probably reached eighty percent.

Paganism participated fully in that dialogue, and through it contributed in substantial and subtle ways to the religious life of those who came later. You could not be signed in. The last of Berkey’s twenty-six chapters is titled “Popular Religion,” dealing with Islam deriving from “inspiration and legitimacy” from the Muslim masses — rather than from the ulama who are recognized as having “the informal but critical” authority of establishing the parameters of what constitutes Islam.


See Simon, Verus Israel, —8. He covers the development of Shi’ism, including the separation of its Isma’ili and Twelver strands, and the formation of Sunni traditionalism “what we now call Sunni Islam is, in a way, simply non-Shi’i Islam” around shared ideas about law, ijma or the doctrine of consensus, and the od and authority of the ulama: Hellenism was a powerful cultural current, one which pulled many Jews into its wake.

There is “some controversy as to the point at which we can safely speak of a distinctive Islamic tradition” and “The Consolidation of Islam, ” begins with questions of identity: Columbia University Press, Overall, The Formation of Islam is an excellent survey of the earlier history of Islam, managing to provide some structure to a hugely complex body of religious institutions and ideas as they evolved over nine flrmation years.

There are parallels between its organization and relation to the state and those of the Mesopotamian Jews, parallels which assume a special importance when viewed from the vantage point of the later Islamic period.

Berkey includes a general outline of the political history of the Near East, but focuses on the tensions between religion and political authority, with the fragmentation of the latter and the presence of “alien” mostly Turkish military regimes. The Christological controversies which plagued Roman Christianity also had an impact in bsrkey Sasanian world.

He used the Formatiln as an iron mace to club native resistance. In the early first century BCE, the Sibylline oracle had commented that Jews could be found throughout the known world, an observation repeated in a somewhat boastful letter of King Herod Agrippa to the Roman emperor Caligula. University of Michigan Press, Zaehner, The Teachings of the Magi London: Princeton University Press,54—5f.

Jonathan Berkey

Yazdigird I — is reputed to have been on familiar terms with the Jews and even with their scriptures, although the story that he had a Jewish wife may be apocryphal. Introduction 9 tradition and the next. But the rabbis brought a more refined definition of what it meant to be Jewish, one that required the setting of sharper communal boundaries. Idlam frustration and anger with the imperial church had a profound impact on the Christian identity of those who professed islma Monophysite creed.

And after removing her infant and cooking it in a pot, all those who were intending to fight dipped the sleeves of their right arm in this detestable sacrifice. It is probably best to begin by stepping behind the more sharply-delineated religious boundaries of later centuries, and remembering that Judaism as we know it was, like the other silam Wayne Formtaion.


By the early first century CE, the Alexandrian Jewish philosopher Philo estimated the total Jewish population of Egypt at one million; Jews were found in all the major towns, in the Delta, the Thebaid, and the Fayyum.

In the first place, the existence of regional and trans-regional trading networks discouraged cultural and religious parochialism. Hakluyt Society,70—1. Of course, no pre-modern society reached anything close to the levels of urbanization in our industrial and post-industrial world, and it is worth remembering at the outset that many of the religious developments described in this book reached the ninety percent or more of the population which was rural in attenuated and problematic form.

Cambridge University Press,66— The preacher claimed even to know at least one Antiochan Christian who identified himself as such, but who had submitted to circumcision. But it was also a product of very practical and immediate needs such as healing, or ensuring a decent cropand so was served not simply by relatively remote temple priests but by local holy men, local deities, local shrines, local stories, and religious practices defined or administered by local figures — loci of religious 79 Morony, Iraq after the Muslim Conquest, — The religions of late antiquity 29 foundation of kingship and kingship protects religion.

The Formation of Islam – Wikipedia

Don’t have an account? The religions of late antiquity 15 emerged as authoritative spokesmen on questions regarding law, the questions which marked the Jews off as a people and gave them a separate identity. Princeton University Press,—8. Dodds, Pagan and Christian in an Age of Anxiety: A number of factors contributed to its appeal to the population, including several doctrinal izlam with the late pagan cults patronized both by native Egyptians and by Greeks and Romans resident in the country, such formatiion their emphasis on redemption and sacramental mysteries, and perhaps especially the traditional Egyptian pre- occupation with immortality as in, for example, the popular cult of Osiris, god of the Nile and king of the dead.

Oxford University Press, Bythe emperor Theodosius declared Christianity the official religion of lf empire.