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Volume :13 Issue : 51 1995      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

Mamluk Studies – A Western Perspective

Auther : Ulrich Haarmann

In this paper a twofold objective is pursued. The first is the discussion of the legitimate place the Mamluk period deserves to be granted within Middle Eastern history. This question entails an analysis of the reasons both for the glaring neglect extended to the history of Egypt under Ottoman sway (1517-1798) in the research of past decades, as well as for the considerably more benevolent attitudes to be found among Arab and Western historians vis-a-vis the Mamluk sultanate (1250-1517). In its second part the state of the art in Mamluk historical studies is presented. Sources, i.e. archival materials and narrative texts, as well as the secondary literature are critically and summarily presented in their intrinsic qualities and deficits, their horizons and their discourse. An agenda of research priorities is also suggested. Although contemporary Arab research is covered in this article, it nevertheless is a piece written from an unmistakably Western perspective and calls for a similar evaluation of the field through Arab eyes.

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