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Over onsFaculteit Godgeleerdheid en GodsdienstwetenschapOrganisatieWetenschappelijke stafPhD ResearchJewish, Christian and Islamic Origins

Marije Coster

The Early Muslim community – The process of self-definition and identity formation

Religious self-definition is the way a religious tradition has defined itself in history; interreligious understanding are the ways in which a religious tradition perceived another. Interreligious understanding can become a way of self-definition as one religious tradition attempts to distinguish itself from another. Early Islam developed into an independent religious system in the context of ancient Arabia, both in confrontation and dialogue with monotheistic tendencies, paganism, Judaism and Christianity,.

The aim of this research is a study of the process and dynamics of self-definition and identity formation in the early Muslim community. The sources used will be Arabic poetry, compositions by contemporaries of the prophet Muhammad. Some of these poets resisted to accept the message preached by Muhammad and attacked him and his community in their poems. Others converted to Islam and started to use their poetic gift in defense of the new community. This study will shed light on the process of self - definition and identity formation of this new community, the dynamics and fluid processes of identification and “othering” of early Muslim Arabia.

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Last modified:29 July 2016 1.31 p.m.