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Twilight of the Saints: Everyday Religion in Ottoman Syria and Palestine

ISBN : 9780190619145

Price(incl.tax): 
¥5,687
Author: 
James Grehan
Pages
360 Pages
Format
Paperback
Size
156 x 234 mm
Pub date
Aug 2016
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In this study of everyday religious culture in early modern Syria and Palestine, James Grehan offers a social history that looks beyond conventional ways of thinking about religion in the Middle East. The most common narratives about the region introduce us to the separate traditions of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, highlighting how each one has created its own distinctive traditions and communities. Twilight of the Saints offers a reinterpretation of religious and cultural history in a region which is today associated with division and violence. Exploring the religious habits of ordinary people, from the late seventeenth to the end of the nineteenth century, when the region was part of the Ottoman Empire, Grehan shows that members of different religious groups participated in a common, overarching religious culture that was still visible at the beginning of the twentieth century. Most evident in the countryside, though present everywhere, this religious mainstream thrived in a society in which few people had access to formal religious teachings. This older, folk religious culture was steeped in notions and rituals that the modern world, with its mainly theological conception of religion, has utterly repudiated. Indeed, the people of Syria and Palestine today would hardly recognize religion as it was experienced in the not-so-distant past. Only by uncovering this lost lived religion, argues Grehan, can we appreciate the largely unacknowledged revolution in religion that has taken place in the region over the last century.

Index: 

Introduction
I. Religious Possibilities
II. Magic Men
III. A Religion of Tombs
IV. Sacred Landscapes
V. Haunted Landscapes
VI. Blood and Prayer
VII. Conclusion
Appendix
Notes
Bibliography
Index

About the author: 

James Grehan is Associate Professor of history at Portland State University. He received his doctoral degree in history from the University of Texas at Austin. He currently lives in Portland with his wife and son.

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