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Approaches to the History of the Interpretation of the Qur’ān


Edited by Andrew Rippin
In recent years, the Qur’ān has come to the forefront of scholarly investigations in Islamic studies. However, the traditional interpretation of the book, commonly termed tafsīr, remains a vast, virtually untapped field of investigation. Many Muslims tend to ignore the material, seeing it as a storehouse of traditional restraints, and scholars frequently gloss over its importance as a historical record of the Muslim community, not appreciating the depth and breadth of the literature. The essays gathered here expose and explore various aspects of the field of tafsīr, and their potential for scholarly research.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-60724-046-4
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Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Jun 17,2013
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 348
Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-60724-046-4
$99.00
$59.40

In recent years, the Qur’ān has come to the forefront of scholarly investigations in Islamic studies, in both its role as scripture and as literature within the Muslim community. However, the traditional interpretation of the book, commonly termed tafsīr, remains a vast, virtually untapped field of investigation. First published in 1988, this collection of essays marks a significant turning point in the scholarly study of tafsīr, bringing the discipline a new prominence and stimulating a new generation of scholars to devote their energy to its study. Although the state of research has improved, many Muslims tend to ignore the material, seeing it as a storehouse of traditional restraints, and scholars frequently gloss over its importance as a historical record of the Muslim community, not appreciating the depth and breadth of the literature. Building on the work of Ignas Goldziher’s Die Richtungen der islamischen Koranauslegung and the investigations of Sezgin, Abbott, and Wansbrough, the essays gathered here expose and explore various aspects of the field of tafsīr, and their potential for scholarly research. The essays are divided into four main sections: formation and development; genres; sectarian dimensions; and modern trends.

Andrew Rippin is Professor of Islamic History at the University of Victoria, Canada. He has written extensively on the Qur’ān and the history of its interpretation.

In recent years, the Qur’ān has come to the forefront of scholarly investigations in Islamic studies, in both its role as scripture and as literature within the Muslim community. However, the traditional interpretation of the book, commonly termed tafsīr, remains a vast, virtually untapped field of investigation. First published in 1988, this collection of essays marks a significant turning point in the scholarly study of tafsīr, bringing the discipline a new prominence and stimulating a new generation of scholars to devote their energy to its study. Although the state of research has improved, many Muslims tend to ignore the material, seeing it as a storehouse of traditional restraints, and scholars frequently gloss over its importance as a historical record of the Muslim community, not appreciating the depth and breadth of the literature. Building on the work of Ignas Goldziher’s Die Richtungen der islamischen Koranauslegung and the investigations of Sezgin, Abbott, and Wansbrough, the essays gathered here expose and explore various aspects of the field of tafsīr, and their potential for scholarly research. The essays are divided into four main sections: formation and development; genres; sectarian dimensions; and modern trends.

Andrew Rippin is Professor of Islamic History at the University of Victoria, Canada. He has written extensively on the Qur’ān and the history of its interpretation.

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Contributor Biography

Andrew Rippin

Andrew Rippin is Professor of Islamic History at the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Some of his studies on the Qur?an have been collected into a single volume, The Qur?an and its interpretative tradition (2001). He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2006.

  • Preface to the Reprint (page 5)
  • Acknowledgements (page 7)
  • Contents (page 9)
  • Contributors (page 11)
  • Abbreviations (page 14)
  • Introduction: Andrew Rippin (page 15)
  • I: Origins and Early Development of the tafsir Tradition (page 27)
  • 2: The Value of the Hafs and Warsh transmissions for the Textual History of the Qur'an (page 45)
  • 3: Qur'anic Hermeneutics: The Views of al-Tabari and Ibn Kathir (page 60)
  • 4: The Function of hadith as Commentary on the Qur'an, as Seen in the Six Authoritative Collections (page 77)
  • 5: Legends in tafsir and hadith Literature: The Creation of Adam and Related Stories (page 96)
  • 6: The Exegetical Genre nasikh al-Qur'an wa mansukhuhu (page 131)
  • 7: The Rhetorical Interpretation of the Qur'an i'jaz and Related Topics (page 153)
  • 8: Lexicographical Texts and the Qur'an (page 172)
  • 9: The Speaking Qur'an and the Silent Qur'an: A Study of the Principles and Development of Imami Shi'i tafsir (page 191)
  • 10: Ismaili ta'wil of the Qur'an (page 213)
  • 11: Interpretation as Revelation: The Qur'an Commentary of Sayyid 'Ali Muhammad Shirazi the Bab (1819-1850) (page 237)
  • 12: Qur'anic Exegesis in the Malay World: In Search of a Profile (page 271)
  • 13: Qur'an Recitation Training in Indonesia: A Survey of Contexts and Handbooks (page 302)
  • 14: Abul-A'la Mawdudi's Tafhim al-Qur'an (page 321)
  • General Index (page 339)
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