Jewish and Islamic foundations of late medieval Christian literary practices

Antonia Carcelén-Estrada

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva


This article explores the transmigration of letters from East to West during the Andalusian shift from an Umayyad cultural politics of cohabitation to an Almoravid politics of acculturation. As the eleventh-century Christian-Islamic frontier was redrawn in the Iberian Peninsula, Muslim Saracens migrated south while Jewish and Christian minorities headed north. This migration fostered the travel of Arabic letters, particularly to the rising Christian kingdoms. By translating Arabic texts into Hebrew and Latin throughout the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, a lineage of Muslim and Jewish writers enabled translatio imperii from Muslim to Christian Iberia, England, and France. Iberian maqāma literary production imitates earlier Persian-Arabic texts of border-crossings and helps illustrate medieval cultural and epistemic exchanges. This shared literary practice for telling stories was particularly popular among migrant writers who crossed religious borders. During the formation of a Christian Iberian and North Atlantic literary imagination, Petrus Alfonsi (ca. 1062-1140), a Jewish convert, was an early figure in this long process of epistemic transfiguration of classic Arabic and Greek texts into medieval Latin and European vernacular literatures. Many others followed his path to survive, in translation, late medieval religious wars.

Idioma originalInglés
Páginas (desde-hasta)45-65
Número de páginas21
PublicaciónViator - Medieval and Renaissance Studies
EstadoPublicada - 2020


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