Journals Higher Education

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Published: 01 June 2019

240 Pages

6.14 x 9.21 inches

ISBN: 9781474425230


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Bookseller Code (01)

New in Paperback

Medieval Empires and the Culture of Competition

Literary Duels at Islamic and Christian Courts

Samuel England

Published by Edinburgh University Press

  • Covers Classical Arabic poetry and official prose, Spanish court documents, Galician Portuguese lyric and Italian narrative works from 950-1350 CE
  • Provides new critical context for historians' work to reconcile the political violence of the late Middle Ages with the cosmopolitanism of that era's Islamic and Christian empires
  • Argues that medieval thinkers' most pressing cultural challenge was to make the court appear as robust as possible in the face of major demographic change and regional war
  • Shows how the ritual of artistic contest allowed elites to come to terms with religious and ethnic groups' rival claims to legitimacy, and to subsume those claims into an overarching courtly ideal
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