God's Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215

God's Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215

by David Levering Lewis


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From the two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning author, God’s Crucible brings to life “a furiously complex age” (New York Times Book Review).

Resonating as profoundly today as when it was first published to widespread critical acclaim a decade ago, God’s Crucible is a bold portrait of Islamic Spain and the birth of modern Europe from one of our greatest historians. David Levering Lewis’s narrative, filled with accounts of some of the most epic battles in world history, reveals how cosmopolitan, Muslim al-Andalus flourished—a beacon of cooperation and tolerance—while proto-Europe floundered in opposition to Islam, making virtues out of hereditary aristocracy, religious intolerance, perpetual war, and slavery. This masterful history begins with the fall of the Persian and Roman empires, followed by the rise of the prophet Muhammad and five centuries of engagement between the Muslim imperium and an emerging Europe. Essential and urgent, God’s Crucible underscores the importance of these early, world-altering events whose influence remains as current as today’s headlines.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781631494307
Publisher: Liveright Publishing Corporation
Publication date: 03/20/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 528
Sales rank: 755,476
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

David Levering Lewis, the author of God’s Crucible, is professor emeritus of history at New York University. A recipient of the National Humanities Medal, Lewis received the Pulitzer Prize for each volume of his W.E.B. Du Bois biography. He lives in New York City.

Table of Contents

List Of Illustrations ix

List Of Maps xi

Chronology xiii

Notes On Usage xix

Preface xxi

1 The Superpowers 3

2 "The Arabs Are Coming!" 29

3 "Jíhad!" 57

4 The Co-opted Caliphate and the Stumbling Jíhad 85

5 The Year 711 105

6 Picking Up the Pieces after Rome 137

7 The Myth of Poitiers 160

8 The Fall and Rise of the Umayyads 184

9 Saving the Popes 209

10 An Empire of Force and Faith 224

11 Carolingian Jíhads: Roncesvalles and Saxony 251

12 The Great Mosque 268

13 The First Europe, Briefly 282

14 Equipoise-Delicate and Doomed 304

15 Disequilibrium, Pelayo's Revenge 333

16 Knowledge Transmitted, Rationalism Repudiated: Ibn Rushd and Musa ibn Maymun 367

Acknowledgments 381

Notes 385

Glossary 423

Genealogies 433

Bibliography 439

Credits 449

Index 451

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Amartya Sen

A wonderfully interesting contribution.

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