Organizing Knowledge : Encyclopaedic Activities in the Pre-eighteenth Century Islamic World

Title

Organizing Knowledge : Encyclopaedic Activities in the Pre-eighteenth Century Islamic World

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Download Table of Contents (152 KB)

Download Preface - by Abdou Filali-Ansary (140 KB)

Download Editor's Note - by Gerhard Endress (129 KB)

Download The Contributors (140 KB)

Download Chapter One : Encyclopaedic Activities in the Islamic World : A Few Questions, and No Answers - by Josef van Ess (199 KB)

Description

The contributions in this volume offer the first comprehensive effort to describe and analyse the collection, classification, presentation and methodology of information in the knowledge society of medieval Islam in the disciplines of religious and legal learning, as well as the rational sciences of Hellenistic origin – philosophy, mathematical and medical sciences.

The volume begins with a general discussion of the concept of encyclopaedia. Successive chapters explore the bases of authority in the institutions of religion and law; bibliographical literature and handbooks of law; compendia of scientific and philosophical learning based on Iranian and Greek sources; and the more specialised expositions of mathematics and philosophy. The special character of Muslim institutions, their teaching traditions and syllabi is also put into perspective.

This is a reference work for the principle genres of ‘encyclopaedic’ outlines and manuals – biography, legal handbooks, historiography of knowledge transmission, cosmography, and the philosophical sciences – and a major contribution to the literary and intellectual history of scholarly writing in the pre-modern Islamic world.

Table of Contents

Part One: The Concept of Encyclopaedia:
1. Encyclopædic Activities in the Islamic World: A Few Questions, and No Answers / by Josef van Ess

Part Two: The Arabic Islamic Traditions:
1. Biographical Dictionaries as the Scholars’ Alternative History of the Muslim Community / by Wadad al-Qadi
2. Encyclopædic Activities in Islamic Jurisprudence / by Ridwan al-Sayyid

Part Three: The Iranian and Greek Traditions
1. The Greek and Persian Background of Early Arabic Encyclopedism / by Dimitri Gutas
2. The Cycle of Knowledge: Intellectual Traditions and Encyclopædias of the Rational Sciences in Arabic Islamic Hellenism / by Gerhard Endress
3. Organizing Scientific Knowledge: The ‘Mixed’ Sciences in Early Classifications / by Elaheh Kheirandish
4. The Brethren of Purity (Ikhwàn al-Íafà") and their Philosophical Treatises (Rasà"il) / by Mokdad Arfa

Part Four: Integrative Concepts
1. Al-Qazwìnì’s 'Ajà"ib al-makhlùqàt: An Encyclopædia of Natural History? / by Syrinx von Hees
2. L’Encyclopédisme dans l’historiographie: réflexions sur le cas d’Ibn Khaldùn / by Abdesselam Cheddadi

Part Five: A Europeanist's Perspective
1. A Europeanist’s Perspective / by Ann Blair

Bibliography

General Index.

Publication Information

Aga Khan University-ISMC; Brill, Leiden, 2006

ISBN

9789004146976

Keywords

Middle East and Islamic Studies, Philosophy, Theology & Science

Organizing Knowledge : Encyclopaedic Activities in the Pre-eighteenth Century Islamic World

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