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PISC workshop: “Are There Post-Mamluk Encyclopedias? Yusuf al-Shirbīni’s Hazz al-Quhuf (c. 1097/1686)”

Tom Abi Samra, Near Eastern Studies

October 26, 2023 · 6:00 pm7:30 pm · 102 Jones

Near Eastern Studies Department; Department of Religion

Yūsuf al-Shirbīnī’s Hazz al-quḥūf (c. 1686) is, formally speaking, a commentary on a poem by a peasant. This, however, is but a structuring device. The Hazz teems with anecdotes about peasants interlaced with quotations from the Quran, ḥadīth, poetry, and more. Drawing on Arabic encyclopedias and the ʿajāʾib tradition, I argue that the Hazz pertains to the genealogy of Arabic encyclopedic writings. In other words, the Hazz, and perhaps other works from the Ottoman period, represents the next chapter of encyclopedic Arabic writing before the advent of colonialism—a history that remains to be written.

The Princeton Islamic Studies Colloquium is a forum at Princeton University for workshopping students’ and guest scholars’ works-in-progress in Islamic Studies and related fields. REGISTER.

Co-sponsors: Near Eastern Studies Department, Department of Religion, Near Eastern Studies Program, Center for Culture, Society and Religion, Humanities Council with support from the Stewart Fund for Religion

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