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Aristocratic Violence and Holy War: Studies in the Jihad and the Arab-Byzantine Frontier (Michael Bonner) Paperback Book, (American Oriental Society, 1996) 9780940490871
Aristocratic Violence and Holy War: Studies in the Jihad and the Arab-Byzantine Frontier (Michael Bonner) Paperback Book, (American Oriental Society, 1996) 9780940490871
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Title: Aristocratic Violence and Holy War: Studies in the Jihad and the Arab-Byzantine Frontier

Author: Bonner, Michael

Publisher: American Oriental Society; Publication Date: 1996

Paperback; ISBN: 9780940490871

Volumes: 1; Pages: xvi, 221

List Price in Paper: $39.50 Our price: $39.50

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"By considering the relationship between the idea of 'holy war' that developed in early Islamic societies and the actual competition for resources and legitimacy among Muslims who lived along the Arab-Byzantine frontier, Michael Bonner provides a fresh perspective on the history of that region during the late Umayyad and early Abbasid periods. He raises the question of why a 'warrior aristocracy'--a group which often dominates frontier societies--did not emerge on the Muslim side, and he suggests that the answer lies, in part, in the ideology of jihad. Bonner contends that jihad articulated an Islamic status which 'combined and transcended' tribal and imperial loyalties and 'left no room for intermediaries between the individual and the community [umma] (p.9) "This summary does not do justice to the richness of Bonner's work. He gleans a mountain of data from painstaking research into a thoughtful, sophisticated and original argument. He is explicit about the historiographical issues he confronts and the methods he uses, and he situates his work in the context of current research not only on the Arab-Byzantine frontier but on frontiers in general. Some readers may wish that sections of this book were connected in a more linear fashion, but Bonner's organization appears to have been dictated by the complexity of the question he posed and the nature of his sources. Aristocratic Violence and Holy War is masterful scholarship."--Kate Lang, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in MESA Bulletin 30 (1996)
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