21 апреля 2009 | Автор: Admin | Рубрика: English литература » Словари и энциклопедии на английском языке | Комментариев: 0
Josef W. Meri "Medieval Islamic Civilization, Volume 1: An Encyclopedia"
Routledge (2006-01) | ISBN 0415966914 | 980 Pages | PDF | 9.2 Mb
This addition to the Routledge Encyclopedias of the Middle Ages series is intended to fill a gap by providing "a single reference work that presents Islamic civilization in a manner intelligible to the nonspecialist." Previously, the nonspecialist would have had to settle for general reference works or works focused on Europe, thus coming away with a fragmented view of Islamic civilization during the medieval period.
In more than 500 entries, coverage ranges from the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa to the Middle East and South and Southeast Asia, and from the sixth through the seventeenth centuries, a span of time that includes what is generally described as the golden age of Islam, 750-1200 C.E. The introduction tells us that historical themes have been deemphasized "in favor of an original synthesis that gives prominence to aspects of daily life." Accordingly, there are entries on topics such as Chess, Children and childhood, Desserts and confections, Gardens and gardening, Spices, and Sports. Other entries treat places, people, and topics in the arts, economics, law, politics, religion, and science. Reflecting another trend in medieval studies, a series of entries, including Women, patrons and Women, poets, deal with women's contributions. One-half of a page to four pages is the general range of entry length. In a few cases, further reading lists are joined by lists of primary sources (for example, in Nafs al-Zakiyya and Slaves and slave trade, western Islamic world).
A small number of black-and-white photographs accompany the text. Both volumes contain the index as well as alphabetical and topical lists of entries. The three maps that are provided can be found only in volume 1. Entries contain see also references, but since this is a work intended for nonspecialists, a few see references would have helped--for example, to direct readers looking for Hagia Sophia to Aya Sophia. Both are listed in the index, but with different page references (and in one case, an incorrect page reference) and no indication that they refer to the same building. The entry Avicenna in the index points the reader to several different pages but not to Ibn Sina --although readers looking up Averroes in the index will find page references for Ibn Rushd.
Though Medieval Islamic Civilization is probably not right for the secondary school audience suggested in the introduction, academic and large public libraries owning other titles in the series will certainly want to add it. The set would also stand alone as part of an Islamic studies collection.
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