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An audio platform for the study of the pre-modern Islamic(ate) past and beyond. We interview academics, archivists and artists on their work for peers and junior students in the field. We aim to educate, inspire, perhaps infuriate, and on the way entertain a little too. Suitable also for general listeners with an interest in geographically diverse medieval history.
 
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Abū al-Walīd Aḥmad Ibn Zaydūn al-Makhzūmī, or simply known as Ibn Zaydūn, was considered the greatest neoclassical poet of al-Andalus. His love affair with the princess and poet Wallada and his exile inspired many of his poems. Timestamps 01:37 Ibn Zaydūn grew up during the decline of the Caliphate of Córdoba. What do we know about his socio-politi…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of Abū Firās al-Ḥamdānī, prince, prisoner, poet. Al-Ḥārith b. Abū al-ʿAlā Saʿīd ibn Ḥamdān al-Taghlibī, better known by his nom de plume of Abū Firās al-Ḥamdānī, was an Arab prince and poet. He was a cousin of Sayf al-Dawla, the ruler of northern Syria, whom we mentioned in ep…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of al-Mutanabbī, whose poetry continues to inspire. Timestamps 01:44 Al-Mutanabbī was born in 915CE in the city Kufah in modern day Iraq at the height of the Abbasid caliphate but with rising challenges from sectarian foes. What do we know about his socio-political context? 05…
 
Abū Bakr Muḥammad ibn Zakariyyāʾ al-Rāzī (865–925 CE), also known by his Latinized name Rhazes, was one of the greatest figures in the history of medicine in the Islamic tradition, and one of its most controversial philosophers. While we have ample surviving evidence for his medical thought, his philosophical ideas mostly have to be pieced together…
 
The laws of Dhimma, or governance of non-Muslim minorities in a Muslim polity, can arouse difficult feelings amongst both Muslims and non-Muslims especially at sites of tension and conflict between them around the globe. To discuss with us today a medieval legal work on these rulings is Dr. Antonia Bosanquet, author of Minding their Place: Space an…
 
"This blessed cenotaph was made for the Imam (al-Shāfʿī)…by ʿUbayd the carpenter, known as Ibn Maʿālai, in the months of the year five hundred seventy-four. May God have mercy on him; may he [also] have mercy on those who are merciful toward him, those who call for mercy upon him, and upon all who worked with him—the woodworkers and carvers—and all…
 
Literally meaning "speech, word, utterance" among other things, Kalām or philosophy of religion within the Islamic ecumene has divided Muslim believers about it scope, methods and even its validity in itself. To give us a brief history of Kalām is the presenter of a new podcast devoted to explaining Kalām to the uninitiated, Dr. Hannah Erlwein. Dr.…
 
Considered by Sunni Muslims as the second most authentic book after the Quran, Muḥammad ibn Ismā‘īl al-Bukhārī's collection of the Prophet's sayings and traditions, or ḥadīth, holds an esteemed station in Sunni scholasticism. To discuss with me the life, works and legacy of al-Bukhari is Dr. Jonathan Brown. Dr. Brown is the Alwaleed bin Talal Chair…
 
In February 2015, the former Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) released a video showing their destruction of Mesopotamian antiquities at the museum of Mosul. Although perhaps ironic that images are used to show the destruction of images, a video intended to shock can be turned against its makers when analysed thoughtfully. Our guest this episo…
 
In and around 869CE, African slaves used to cultivate the salt marshes of Basra in present-day Iraq revolted against their master. Led by an ʿAlī b. Muḥammad, a charismatic messianic figure, their uprising would prove to very damaging to an already beleaguered Abbasid caliphate before being finally crushed in 883CE. To explain the cause, details an…
 
To discuss with us the life, works and legacy of Shaykh al-Mufīd is Dr. Ahab Bdaiwi. Dr. Bdaiwi completed his PhD at Exeter on Islamic intellectual history and is currently the Cook-Crone Research Bye-Fellow in Ancient and Medieval History at the university of Cambridge. Timestamps 00.00 Introduction 01.50 Shaykh al-Mufid was born in Baghdad around…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of one controversial Sufi, al-Ḥallāj, whose poetic outpourings continue to inspire. This is the sixth part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utilised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on our guest, see kblankinship.com. Sponsor…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of one of the greatest Abbasid literary figures, Abū Tammām, known particularly for his anthology. This is the fifth part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utilised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on our guest, see kblankinsh…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of one of the greatest Abbasid poets, Abū al-ʿAtāhiyyaḧ, known particularly for his ascetic poetry. This is the fourth part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utlised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on our guest, see kblankins…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of one of the greatest Abbasid poets, Abū Nuwās, known particularly for his homoerotic verse and wine poetry. This is the third part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utlised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on our guest, see …
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of one of the greatest Umayyad poets, al-Farazdaq, known particularly for satirizing rival poets as well as amorous verse. This is the second part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utlised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on o…
 
Dr. Kevin Blankinship, BYU Utah, speaks about the life, works and legacy of the boisterous prince, ʾImr al-Qays. Was he actually a Christian? Are his recorded poems authentic? This is the first part of a twelve part series exploring classical Arabic poetry which can be utlised in college-level teaching programmes. For more on our guest, see kblanki…
 
Dr. Christian Sahner gives a fluent and concise introduction to Christian life prior and after the Arab-Islamic conquests of the Levant including the phenomenon of conversion and martyrdom of executed Christian converts from Islam. Sponsored by IHRC bookshop. Visit shop.ihrc.org. Use discount code AHP15 for 15% off purchases. Terms and conditions a…
 
Dr. Rachel Schine speaks about understandings of race and blackness in premodern Islamic(ate) societies through the tale of Delhemma, a popular epic of rival families and 'Abd al-Wahhāb, the black offspring of Fāṭimah, the eponymous Delhemma (lit. "the one of high aspiration"), disowned by her husband. Sponsored by IHRC bookshop. Visit shop.ihrc.or…
 
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