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Jewish Studies

Home » Past Events » Jewish Political Legitimacy in the Islamic Middle Ages: From Spain to Iraq

Jewish Political Legitimacy in the Islamic Middle Ages: From Spain to Iraq

Join us on Monday, September 11th, 2017 at 12:00pm for a talk by Jonathan Decter (Brandeis University). The talk, Jewish Political Legitimacy in the Islamic Middle Ages: From Spain to Iraq, will take place at the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, and lunch will be provided. See the description and poster below.

Throughout time, the articulation of political legitimacy has been a central concern for political figures of many sorts.  Although Jews in medieval Islamic empires did not possess a state, its leadership nonetheless practiced a form of “statecraft,” one aspect of which was the impression of just “rule.” A primary element of this practice was the offering of panegyric, which like the panegyrics for Caesar and caliphs, depicted leaders who were at once members of their communities and embodiments of ideals of peoplehood, religion, and epochs.  This lecture discusses ways in which forms of Islamic political legitimacy shaped how Arabic-speaking Jews conceptualized and portrayed their own leadership.

This talk is co-sponsored by the Program in Classical and Mediterranean Studies.