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New Released: Yemeni Manuscript Cultures in Peril

Yemeni Manuscript Cultures in Peril contributes to the history of books and libraries and their role in the scholastic culture in Yemen, past and present.

Zaydism, a branch of Shiʿi Islam dating to the eighth century CE, has historic roots in the Northern Highlands of Yemen and the Caspian regions of Northern Iran, and its literary tradition is among the richest within Islamic civilization. The most significant and by far largest collections of Zaydi manuscripts are housed by the many public and private libraries of Yemen, an endangered cultural heritage tradition, currently at risk due to the conflict and warfare in Yemen. Of great importance are also holdings of Yemeni manuscripts that are kept elsewhere. In view of the poor state of scholarship in the area of Zaydi studies, the challenges that result from the significant dispersal of the material are manifold. Yemeni Manuscript Cultures in Peril contributes to the history of books and libraries and their role in the scholastic culture in Yemen, past and present. The contributions brought together in this volume address a wide spectrum of aspects concerning Yemeni manuscript cultures, with some focusing on their history and present state within Yemen and others discussing the collections of manuscripts of Yemeni provenance in Europe and elsewhere. Contributors are: Hassan Ansari, Stefanie Brinkmann, Gabriele vom Bruck, Bernard Haykel, Brinkley Messick, Christoph Rauch, Anne Regourd, Valentina Sagaria Rossi, Karin Scheper, Sabine Schmidtke, Jan Thiele, Daniel Martin Varisco, Arnoud Vrolijk, and Zayd al-Wazir.

About the Editors

Hassan Ansari is a Visiting Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton). He received his Ph.D. from EPHE (Sorbonne-Paris) in Philosophy. Prior to EPHE, he studied Arabic literature, Quranic exegesis and hadith, Islamic theology, Islamic philosophy, mysticism, and law in Qom and Tehran. He has published various books and many articles in Persian, Arabic, French, and English, including L’imamat et l’Occultation selon l’imamisme: Étude bibliographique et histoire des textes (Leiden: Brill, 2017); Studies in Medieval Islamic Intellectual Traditions (with Sabine Schmidtke) (Lockwood Press, 2017); Al-Šarīf al-Murtaḍā’s Oeuvre and Thought in Context: An Archaeological Inquiry into Texts and Their Transmission (with Sabine Schmidtke) (in press); and Caliphate and Imamate: Selected Political Works from the Islamic Tradition, Cambridge University Press (with Nebil Husayn) (forthcoming).

Sabine Schmidtke is Professor of Islamic Intellectual History at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. She has published extensively on Islamic and Jewish intellectual history, as well as the Muslim reception of the Bible and its early translation history into Arabic. Her works include Theologie, Philosophie und Mystik im zwölferschiitischen Islam des 9./15. Jahrhunderts: Die Gedankenwelten des Ibn Abī Ǧumhūr al-Aḥsāʾī (um 838/1434-35–nach 906/1501) (Brill, 2000), The Oxford Handbook of Islamic Theology (OUP, 2016), and, together with Hassan Ansari, Studies in Medieval Islamic Intellectual Traditions (Lockwood Press, 2017). She is also the executive editor of Intellectual History of the Islamicate World (Brill) and, with Hassan Ansari, of Shii Studies Review (Brill).

Table of Contents

The Fate of Yemeni Manuscripts, Late Nineteenth to Early Twenty-First Centuries: An Introduction (1)
Hassan Ansari and Sabine Schmidtke

PART ONE. MANUSCRIPT LIBRARIES IN YEMEN (123)

‘Touching a Piece of History’: The Life-Cycles and Destinies of Private Yemeni Libraries in an Era of Turmoil (125)
Gabriele vom Bruck

al-Khizāna al-Mutawakkiliyya: The Imam’s New Library (153)
Brinkley Messick

The Historic Journey of Banī al-Wazīr’s Library (175)
Zaid bin Ali al-Wazir

Yemeni Cultural Patrimony in Manuscript Form: Several Decades of Public Policy (193)
Anne Regourd

Nūr al-Maʿārif: The Late 13th-Century Rasulid Administrative Archive of al-Malik al-Muzaffar Yusuf (217)
Daniel Martin Varisco

PART TWO. YEMENI MANUSCRIPTS IN THE WORLD (239)

Toward a Reconstruction of ʿAbd Allāh b. Zayd al-ʿAnsī’s Oeuvre and Thought (241)
Hassan Ansari and Sabine Schmidtke

From Iran to Kawkabān: The Transfer of Sunnī Ḥadīth to Zaydī Yemen : A Case Study of Ms. Vienna, Cod. Glaser 30 (349)
Stefanie Brinkmann

Yemeni Manuscripts of Diverse Provenance at the Berlin State Library (387)
Christoph Rauch

Eduard Glaser’s Personal Nachlass in Archives of the Czech Republic (419)
Jan Thiele

Opening Yemen Up to Italy: Coffee, Textiles, and Arabic Manuscripts (441)
Valentina Sagaria Rossi

From the Eyries of Yemen to the Pastures of Holland: The Acquisition and Preservation of Yemeni Manuscripts at Leiden University Library (487)
Karin Scheper and Arnoud Vrolijk

Al-Sayyid Muḥammad b. ʿAbd al-Raḥmān al-ʿUbaykān (1899–1993): A Saudi Official and His Yemeni Manuscript Collection (519)
Bernard Haykel

Bibliographic Information

Title: Yemeni Manuscript Cultures in Peril

Editors: Hassan Ansari and Sabine Schmidtke

Contribution: Stefanie Brinkmann, Gabriele vom Bruck, Bernard Haykel, Brinkley Messick, Christoph Rauch, Anne Regourd, Valentina Sagaria Rossi, Karin Scheper, Jan Thiele, Daniel Martin Varisco, Arnoud Vrolijk & Zaid bin Ali al-Wazir

Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC

 Language: English

Length: 541

ISBN: 978-1-4632-4202-2

Pub. Date: Apr 30,2022

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