Qur’anic exegesis has become the battleground of political Islam and theological conflict among various Muslim schools of thought. Using comparative and contrastive methodology, examples from the Qur'an are investigated in the light of various theological views to delineate the birth, development and growth of Qur'anic exegesis. The political status quo, in the past and at present, has impinged upon Qur’anic exegesis more than on any other discipline in Islamic studies. This book illustrates the dichotomy between mainstream and non-mainstream Islam, showing how Qur’anic exegesis reflects the subtle dogmatic differences and political cleavages in Islamic thought. Chapters explore in depth the intrusive views of the compilers of early exegesis manuscripts, the scepticism among Western scholars about the authenticity of early Muslim works of exegesis and of prophetic tradition, and the role of exegesis as a tool to reaffirm the Qur’an as a canon. Written to appeal to those with comparative exegetical interests as well as those focused on Islamic studies in general, this book will be an important reference for research students, scholars, and students of Islamic Studies, Theology, Religious studies and Middle Eastern Studies.
Reading the Qur’an in the Twenty-First Century considers the development of Qur’anic interpretation and highlights modern debates around new approaches to interpretation. It explores how Muslims from various theological, legal, socio-political and philosophical backgrounds think about the meaning and relevance of the Qur’an, and how their ideas apply in the contemporary world. The book: reflects on one of the most dominant approaches to interpretation in the pre-modern period, textualism, and the reaction to that in Muslim feminist readings of the Qur’an today. covers issues such as identifying the hierarchical nature of Qur’anic values, the criteria for the use of hadith in interpretation, fluidity of meaning and ways of ensuring a degree of stability in interpretation. examines key Qur'anic passages and compares pre-modern and modern interpretations to show the evolving nature of interpretation. Examples discussed include: the authority of men over women, the death of Jesus, shura and democracy, and riba and interest. Abdullah Saeed provides a practical guide for interpretation and presents the principal ideas of a contextualist approach, which situates the original message of the Qur’an in its wider social, political, cultural, economic and intellectual context. He advocates a more flexible method of interpretation that gives due recognition to earlier interpretations of the Qur’an while also being aware of changing conditions and the need to approach the Qur’an afresh today.
Release on 2010-10-01 | by Christine Elizabeth Hayes
Classical Traditions in Contemporary Perspective
Author: Christine Elizabeth Hayes
Pubpsher: Fortress Press
This brief survey text tells the story of Judaism. Through the lens of modern biblical scholarship, Christine Elizabeth Hayes explores the shifting cultural contexts-the Babylonian exile, the Roman Empire, the Byzantine period, the rise of Christianity-that affected Jewish thought and practice, and laid the groundwork for the Talmudic era and its modern legacy. Thematic chapters explore the evolution of Judaism through its beginnings in biblical monotheism, the Second Temple Period in Palestine, the interaction of Hellenism and Judaism, the spread of rabbinic authority, and the essence of ethno-religious Jewish identity.