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Journal ArticleDOI

Dreaming Across Boundaries: The Interpretation of Dreams in Islamic Lands

31 Jan 2010-Religion (No longer published by Elsevier)-Vol. 40, Iss: 1, pp 67-68
About: This article is published in Religion.The article was published on 2010-01-31. It has received 15 citations till now. The article focuses on the topics: Interpretation (philosophy).
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06 Jun 2014
TL;DR: The production and history of the talismanic scroll as a medium through a Fatimid, Ayyubid, and Mamluk historical periods is discussed in this paper.
Abstract: The following study traces the production and history of the talismanic scroll as a medium through a Fatimid, Ayyubid, and Mamluk historical periods. My dissertation understands the protocol of manufacturing and utilizing talismanic scrolls. The dissertation is a study of the Qur’an, prayers and illustrations of these talismanic works. I begin by investigating a theory of the occult the medieval primary sources of the Neo-platonic tenth century Ikhwān al-Ṣafāʾ and al-Bunī (d.1225). I establish that talismans are generally categorized as science (‘ilm). Next, a dynastic spotlight of talismanic scrolls creates a chronological framework for the dissertation. The Fatimid talismanic scrolls and the Ayyubid pilgrimage scrolls are both block-printed and are placed within the larger conceptual framework of pilgrimage and devotion. The two unpublished Mamluk scrolls from Dar Al-Athar Al-Islamiyyah are long beautiful handwritten scrolls that provide a perspective on how the occult is part of the daily life of the practitioner in the medieval Islamic culture. Through an in depth analysis of the written word and images, I establish that textually and visually there is a template for the creation of these sophisticated scrolls. Lastly, I discuss the efficacy of these scrolls, I use theories of linguistic anthropology and return to the Islamic primary sources to establish that there is a language of the occult and there are people that practiced the occult. The word of God and the Qurʾān empower the scrolls I studied. As for the people who practiced the occult, I turn to the tenth century Ibn al-Nadim and

44 citations

02 Aug 2013
Abstract: Based on a broad survey of the reception of Firdausī‘s Shāhnāma in medieval times, this dissertation argues that Firdausī‘s oeuvre was primarily perceived as a book of wisdom and advice for kings and courtly élites. The medieval reception of the Shāhnāma is clearly manifested in the comments of medieval authors about Firdausī and his work, and in their use of the Shāhnāma in the composition of their own works. The production of ikhtiyārāt-i Shāhnāmas (selections from the Shāhnāma) in medieval times and the remarkable attention of the authors of mirrors for princes to Firdausī‘s opus are particularly illuminating in this regard. The survey is complemented by a close textual reading of the Ardashīr cycle in the Shāhnāma in comparison with other medieval historical accounts about Ardashīr, in order to illustrate how history in the Shāhnāma is reduced to only a framework for the presentation of ideas and ideals of kingship. Based on ancient Persian beliefs regarding the ideal state of the world, I argue that Ardashīr in the Shāhnāma is represented as a Saviour of the world. Within this context, I offer new interpretations of the symbolic tale of Ardashīr‘s fight against a giant worm, and explain why the idea of the union of kingship and religion, a major topic in almost all medieval Persian mirrors for princes, has often been attributed to Ardashīr. Finally, I compare iii the Ardashīr cycle in the Shāhnāma with nine medieval Persian mirrors for princes to demonstrate that the ethico-political concepts contained in them, as well as the portrayal of Ardashīr, remain more or less the same in all these works. Study of the Shāhnāma as a mirror for princes, as this study shows, not only reveals the meaning of its symbolic tales, but also sheds light on the pre-Islamic roots of some of the ethicopolitical concepts presented in the medieval Perso-Islamic literature of wisdom and advice for kings and courtiers.

20 citations

01 Feb 2012

16 citations

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01 Jan 2017
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examined the literary output of the Iraqi author Muḥammad Khuḍayyir (b. 1942), and specifically analyzed how his fiction, by turns puzzle-like, metafictional, and open-ended,invites the reader to create meaning.
Abstract: This study examines the literary output of the Iraqi author Muḥammad Khuḍayyir (b. 1942), and specifically analyzes how his fiction—by turns puzzle-like, metafictional, and open-ended—invites the reader to create meaning. This project employs the theoretical approach of reader-response theory to examine his texts, specifically addressing the work of three theorists: firstly, Umberto Eco and his concept of the “open work” as a distinct quality of modern literature; secondly, Wolfgang Iser, who proposed that texts destabilize the reader’s horizon of expectations, and thus prompt her to fill in its gaps; and finally, Stanley Fish, who argues that a reader’s response is structured by his participation in an interpretive community. These insights are applied to stories from Khuḍayyir’s collections (al-Mamlaka al-sawdāʾ [1972], Fī darajat khams wa-arbaʿīn miʾawī [1978], and Ruʾyā kharīf [1995]), as well as to his full-length texts (Baṣrayāthā [1993], Kurrāsat Kānūn [2000], and Ḥadāʾiq al-wujūh [2008]). Notably, his longer works blend elements of fiction, literary essay, memoir, and history, and thus subvert familiar expectations of genre. The prolonged violence wrought by war and international sanctions—particularly the destruction that his home city of Basra endured during the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988)—has prompted Khuḍayyir’s thematic preoccupation with an organic local past that stubbornly endures against forces that seek to erase it. This sense of endurance is encapsulated in his magnum opus, Baṣrayāthā. The city of Baṣrayāthā, Basra’s fictional analogue, appears not only in the book of the same name, but in several of his more recent stories. In them, Khuḍayyir envisions memory as urban space, and the city as a palimpsest of all its past historical iterations. Drawing on Fish, this study suggests that Baṣrayāthā and its interpretive community are mutually generative: not only does a pre-existing set of readers familiar with the Iraqi context create aesthetic meaning from a text such as Baṣrayāthā, but the book in turn creates its interpretive community, as evidenced by some of the extra-textual phenomena influenced by Khuḍayyir’s literary project. Degree Type Dissertation Degree Name Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Graduate Group Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations First Advisor Roger M. Allen

12 citations

Journal Article
TL;DR: The authors reviewed night-dream accounts by IS members and supporters, seeking to assess the prominence, main themes, and reception of such accounts, concluding that night-dances appear to be at least as important to IS as to previous jihadi groups.
Abstract: Previous research has shown that jihadis attach great importance to dreams, to the point of taking them into account in personal and strategic decision-making This article asks whether the same is true of Islamic State (IS) Using evidence from social media and IS publications, I review night dream accounts by IS members and supporters, seeking to assess the prominence, main themes, and reception of such accounts Dreams appear to be at least as important to IS as to previous jihadi groups Like other jihadis, IS activists consider dreams a potential window into the future and use them to make sense of the world, justify decisions, and claim authority In at least one case (that of Garland, Texas attacker Elton Simpson), a dream may have informed the decision to take violent action

10 citations

10 Nov 2011
TL;DR: In this paper, a priori, qu'Ibn Qutayba's manuel d'interpretation des reves is authentique, and nous demontrons qu'il est authentique and devoilons les procedes d'islamisation and d'arabisation mis en œuvre dans the redaction of his manuel.
Abstract: C’est dans la tradition islamique que le plus grand nombre de manuels d’interpretation des reves ont ete composes. Il semble que les premieres communautes de musulmans cultivaient un interet particulier a elucider leurs messages oniriques, le reve etant parfois meme considere un mode de revelation. Nous ne savons que tres peu a propos des origines et de la formation de la tradition textuelle d’interpretation des reves en Islam. Dans cette these, nous presentons deux des plus anciens manuels d’interpretation des reves rediges en Islam, le manuel d’Ibn Qutayba (m.276/889) intitule Ta'wīl al-rū'yā, traduit dans son integralite en francais, de meme que le manuel d’interpretation des reves attribue a Ibrāhīm B.'Abdullāh al-Kirmānī (m.184/800), dans son original arabe. Dans notre analyse du manuel d’Ibn Qutayba, nous demontrons, a priori, qu’il est authentique, puis considerant cette œuvre a la lumiere des autres oeuvres qutaybiennes, nous devoilons les procedes d’islamisation et d’arabisation mis en œuvre dans la redaction de son manuel d’interpretation des reves. En seconde partie, nous presentons le texte arabe d’un manuel attribue a Ibrāhīm B.'Abdullāh al-Kirmānī. Une comparaison entre le manuel de Kirmānī et celui d’Ibn Qutayba — qui cite ce dernier — semble confirmer l’authenticite du texte, de meme que notre hypothese du role qu’Ibn Qutayba exerce dans l’islamisation et l’arabisation de l’oniromancie. Notre etude invite a repenser les origines et la formation de la science de l’interpretation des reves en Islam dans le plus grand contexte des sciences divinatoires du Moyen-Orient.

8 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A largely neglected thirteenth-century text, a Hebrew version of Aristotle's three treatises on sleep, dreams, and dream-divination, is reviewed in this article.
Abstract: A largely neglected thirteenth-century text, a Hebrew version of Aristotle's three treatises on sleep, dreams, and dream-divination, is reviewed. This version, by the Provencal scholar Solomon Melguiri, "updates" Aristotle's theory of sleep and dreams through explanations derived from other Aristotelian texts and the inclusion, in particular, of Galenic theories. It is shown that Melguiri cannot be credited with all the alterations. Parts of the adaptation are more plausibly explained as the work of its Latin adaptor(s), who incorporated Arabic material. Alternatively, the Hebrew treatise may draw on an Arabic-Latin translation.

8 citations