Journeys in Holy Lands: The Evolution of the Abraham-Ishmael Legends in Islamic Exegesis

By Reuven Firestone | Go to book overview

Preface

This book would not have been possible without the help and encouragement of friends and colleagues. Professor William Brinner offered early guidance by helping me to wend my way through the maze of problems and issues inherent in the study of Isrā'īliyyāt, and continued to offer suggestions and comments throughout. Very helpful comments on parts of all of this work have been offered by Professors Gordon Newby, Marilyn Waldman, Steven Wasserstrom, Jacob Lassner, Robert McChesney, and Ross Brann. They alerted me to a number of errors and stylistic difficulties as well as questions regarding my interpretation of the material, thereby greatly strengthening the book. I am particularly indebted to Professor Bayly Winder, whose passing has been a tremendous loss for the study of the Middle East. And Professor F.E. Peters, who served in many respects as mentor throughout my studies at New York University and beyond, deserves special thanks for his encouragement and willingness to impart some of his tremendous creativity and incisive thinking. This book would have been unthinkable without the patience, support, and encouragement of my wife Ruth, whose own professional and family responsibilities made her support of this enterprise no simple matter.

-vii-

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Journeys in Holy Lands: The Evolution of the Abraham-Ishmael Legends in Islamic Exegesis
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • Introduction ix
  • Transliterations xiii
  • Abbreviations xv
  • Chapter 1 - Biblicists and Arabs 3
  • Chapter 2 - The Nature of the Literature Islamic Interpretive Literature 11
  • Part Two - The Syrian Prologue 23
  • Chapter 3 - Abraham's Emmigration 25
  • Chapter 4 - The Tyrant 31
  • Chapter 5 - The Birth of Ishmael 39
  • Chapter 6 - Beersheba 48
  • Chapter 7 - The Angels Visit 52
  • Part Three - The Meccan Sequence 61
  • Chapter 8 - The Transfer to Mecca 63
  • Chapter 9 - The Jurhum 72
  • Chapter 10 - Abraham's Visits 76
  • Chapter 11 - Building the Ka'Ba 80
  • Chapter 12 - The Pilgrimage 94
  • Part Four - The Sacrifice 105
  • Chapter 13 - Prelude to Sacrifice 107
  • Chapter 14 - The Sacrificial Act 116
  • Chapter 15 - The Redemption 129
  • Chapter 16 - Isaac or Ishmael? 135
  • Conclusion 153
  • Part Five - Appendices 161
  • Appendix 1 - The Exegetes and Their Sources Ibn Sa'D, KitĀb Al-TabaqĀt Al-KabĪr 163
  • Appendix 2 - Traditionists Naming Isaac or Ishmael as the Intended Sacrificial Victim 170
  • Notes 179
  • Selected Bibliography 245
  • Index 259
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