Shi'i Islam, with its rich and extensive history, has played a crucial role in the evolution of Islam as both a major world religion and civilization. The prolific achievements of Shi?i theologians, philosophers and others are testament to the spiritual and intellectual wealth of this community. Yet Shi?i studies has unjustly remained a long-neglected field, despite the important contribution that Shi'ism has made to Islamic traditions. Only in recent decades, partially spurred by global interest in political events of the Middle East, have scholars made some significant contributions in this area. The Study of Shi'i Islam presents papers originally delivered at the first international colloquium dedicated exclusively to Shi'i studies, held in 2010 at The Institute of Ismaili Studies, London. Within the book are eight sections, namely, history, the Qur'an and its Shi'i interpretations, hadith, law, authority, theology, rites and rituals, and intellectual traditions and philosophy. Each section begins with an introduction contextualizing the aspects of studying Shi'i Islam particular to its theme, before going on to address topics such as the state of the field, methodology and tools, and the primary issues with which contemporary scholars of Shi'i studies are dealing. The scope and depth here covered makes this book of especial interest to researchers and students alike within the field of Islamic studies. The volume benefits from the diverse expertise of nearly 30 world-class scholars, including Mohammad-Ali Amir-Moezzi, Meir M. Bar-Asher, Farhad Daftary, Daniel De Smet, Gerald R. Hawting, Nader El-Bizri, Etan Kohlberg, Wilferd Madelung, Andrew Newman, Ismail K. Poonawala, Sabine Schmidtke and Paul E. Walker.
Contents Foreword by Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi Preface Contributors Abbreviations PART I: HISTORY AND HISTORIOGRAPHY Introduction Wilferd Madelung 1. Reflections on the Expression d?n ?Al?: The Origins of the Shi?i Faith Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi 2. The Study of the Ismailis: Phases and Issues Farhad Daftary 3. Al-Maqr?z?'s Connection to the Fatimids Nasser Rabbat PART II: THE QUR?AN AND ITS SHI?I INTERPRETATIONS Introduction Meir M. Bar-Asher 4. What Defines a (Pre-modern) Shi?i Tafs?r? Notes Towards the History of the Genre of Tafs?r in Islam, in Light of the Study of the Shi?i Contribution Andrew Rippin 5. The Tafs?r of al-?ibar? (d. 286/899): Qur?anic Exegesis and Early Shi?i Esotericism Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi 6. The Empire Writes Back: Fatimid Ismaili Ta?w?l (Allegoresis) and the Mysteries of the Ancient Greeks David Hollenberg 7. The Authority to Interpret the Qur?an Meir M. Bar-Asher PART III: SHI?I ?AD?TH Introduction Etan Kohlberg 8. Writing and Resistance: The Transmission of Religious Knowledge in Early Shi?ism Maria Massi Dakake 9. Pre-B?yid ?ad?th Literature: The Case of al-Barq? from Qumm (d. 274/888 or 280/894) in Twelve Sections Roy Vilozny 10. The Story of 'Pen and Paper' and its Interpretation in Muslim Literary and Historical Tradition Gurdofarid Miskinzoda PART IV: SHI?I LAW Introduction Mohyddin Yahia 11. Renunciation (Zuhd) in the Early Shi?i Tradition Christopher Melchert 12. The Evolution of al-Q??? al-Nu?m?n's Theory of Ismaili Jurisprudence as Reflected in the Chronology of his Works on Jurisprudence Ismail K. Poonawala 13. The Theory of M?l among the Zayd?s Sayyid Zayd al-Wazir PART V: AUTHORITY Introduction Andrew J. Newman 14. 'Seeking the Face of God': The Safawid ?ikmat Tradition's Conceptualisation of Wal?ya Takw?niyya Sajjad Rizvi 15. The Role of the Imam-caliph as Depicted in Official Treatises and Documents Issued by the Fatimids Paul E. Walker 16. 'Minority Reports': Twelver Shi?i Disputations and Authority in the B?yid Period Andrew J. Newman PART VI: THEOLOGY Introduction Wilferd Madelung 17. Early Im?m? Theology as Reflected in the Kit?b al-k?fi of al-Kulayn? Wilferd Madelung 18. Al-Shaykh al-????: His Writings on Theology and their Reception Hassan Ansari and Sabine Schmidtke PART VII: RITES AND RITUALS Introduction Gerald R. Hawting 19. ??sh?r?? Rituals, Identity and Politics: A Comparative Approach (Lebanon and India) Sabrina Mervin 20. The Practice of Chir?gh-i rawshan among the Ismailis of Central Asia Hakim Elnazarov PART VIII: PHILOSOPHY AND INTELLECTUAL TRADITIONS Introduction Daniel De Smet 21. Shahrast?n?'s ?an?f Revelation: A Shi?i Philosophico-Hermeneutical System Toby Mayer 22. Philosophising at the Margins of 'Shi?i Studies': Reflections on Ibn S?n?'s Ontology Nader El-Bizri Epilogue by Azim Nanji Index