Middle Eastern History Notes

Middle Eastern History Notes - Middle Eastern History...

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Middle Eastern History 1-15-07 Geography – Spain (until 1492), N. Africa, Egypt, Iran, Central Asia – vast span of territory. The term Middle East came from the British. The area was between them and India (their great prize). Route to the jewel of their imperial gem. People never used this term, they used other forms of identification. The French called this same chunk as the Near East (mainly occupied North Africa). The term exists in Arabic, Persian, and Hebrew. The concept is something that people constructed at particular points in time. We inherited it. People in the time period didn’t call it this. The world today is very different. Tribal elders remembered the history of their tribe and clan because there was no writing material available in early Arabia. The culture valued memory and truth (repetition). Look at distinct types of identity and record keeping. Look at commercial and economic content. How is it that if we look at the Crusades, it was an era of economic and cultural exchange of a peaceful and profitable nature? There were economic webs between Jews, Christians, and Muslims that made a lot of people wealthy. How do Islamic cultures impact other cultures? Cotton, citrus, and rice started in Muslim areas, were sent to Spain, and later spread to the US. Baghdad (762) was founded as the first imperial capital of the Abbasid dynasty. When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World – Baghdad used to be a fabulous place (The City of Peace). It represents the cultural contact of the Muslim civilization. Largest urban capital in the world at the time (outside of China). It was the place to be. Who ruled there and how? How did cities emerge/develop with the spread of Islam? Why did the Middle East become Muslim? Conversion to Islam – process that undermines the notion that faith came with the sword. 1258 – Mongols besieged the city and burned it to the ground. > Their leader was the grandson of Genghis Kahn – Hulegu. > Muslims thought it was the end of the world. Some inhabitants of the city of Baghdad called Bush Hulegu during the First Gulf War. This would have no meaning to people without historical knowledge. People use their culture to define who they are. How does bad history lead to bad policy issues?
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2005 column in Newsweek made assertions about the history of the region. Use this as a case study of the importance of history. 1.3 billion Muslims – most don’t live in the area we study now. Most live in Indonesia, Pakistan, or Bangladesh. We need to appreciate why this history matters so much to people. Become familiar with basic vocabulary of the system. The founders of the U.S. new a lot about Islam. The rise of the Ottoman Dynasty. How Thomas Jefferson Read the Koran
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Middle Eastern History Notes - Middle Eastern History...

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