Spring 2017

Early Islam: Construction of an Historical Tradition

Listed in: Asian Languages and Civilizations, as ASLC-355  |  History, as HIST-393

Formerly listed as: ASLC-55  |  HIST-60


Monica M. Ringer (Section 01)


(Offered as HIST 393 [MEP] and ASLC 355 [WA].)  This course examines in depth the formative period of Islam between c. 500-680. Using predominantly primary material, we will chart the emergence, success, and evolution of Islam, the Islamic community, and the Islamic polity. The focus of this course is on understanding the changing nature over time of peoples’ understanding of and conception of what Islam was and what Islam implied socially, religiously, culturally and politically. We concentrate on exploring the growth of the historical tradition of Islam and its continued contestations amongst scholars today. This course will familiarize students with the events, persons, ideas, texts and historical debates concerning this period. It is not a course on the religion or beliefs of Islam, but a historical deconstruction and analysis of the period. This class is writing intensive. Two class meetings per week.

Admission with consent of the instructor. Not open to first-year students. Limited to 15 students. Spring semester. Professor Ringer.


Attention to Writing


2022-23: Offered in Spring 2023
Other years: Offered in Fall 2008, Spring 2013, Fall 2014, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, Spring 2022