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Leo Africanus

Leo Africanus
Author: Amin Maalouf
Publisher: New Amsterdam Books
Total Pages: 370
Release: 1998-03-25
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 1461663318

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"I, Hasan the son of Muhammad the weigh-master, I, Jean-Leon de Medici, circumcised at the hand of a barber and baptized at the hand of a pope, I am now called the African, but I am not from Africa, nor from Europe, nor from Arabia. I am also called the Granadan, the Fassi, the Zayyati, but I come from no country, from no city, no tribe. I am the son of the road, my country is the caravan, my life the most unexpected of voyages." Thus wrote Leo Africanus, in his fortieth year, in this imaginary autobiography of the famous geographer, adventurer, and scholar Hasan al-Wazzan, who was born in Granada in 1488. His family fled the Inquisition and took him to the city of Fez, in North Africa. Hasan became an itinerant merchant, and made many journeys to the East, journeys rich in adventure and observation. He was captured by a Sicilian pirate and taken back to Rome as a gift to Pope Leo X, who baptized him Johannes Leo. While in Rome, he wrote the first trilingual dictionary (Latin, Arabic and Hebrew), as well as his celebrated Description of Africa, for which he is still remembered as Leo Africanus.


Trickster Travels

Trickster Travels
Author: Natalie Zemon Davis
Publisher: Macmillan + ORM
Total Pages: 659
Release: 2007-03-06
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
ISBN: 1466829303

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An engrossing study of Leo Africanus and his famous book, which introduced Africa to European readers Al-Hasan al-Wazzan--born in Granada to a Muslim family that in 1492 went to Morocco, where he traveled extensively on behalf of the sultan of Fez--is known to historians as Leo Africanus, author of the first geography of Africa to be published in Europe (in 1550). He had been captured by Christian pirates in the Mediterranean and imprisoned by the pope, then released, baptized, and allowed a European life of scholarship as the Christian writer Giovanni Leone. In this fascinating new book, the distinguished historian Natalie Zemon Davis offers a virtuoso study of the fragmentary, partial, and often contradictory traces that al-Hasan al-Wazzan left behind him, and a superb interpretation of his extraordinary life and work. In Trickster Travels, Davis describes all the sectors of her hero's life in rich detail, scrutinizing the evidence of al-Hasan's movement between cultural worlds; the Islamic and Arab traditions, genres, and ideas available to him; and his adventures with Christians and Jews in a European community of learned men and powerful church leaders. In depicting the life of this adventurous border-crosser, Davis suggests the many ways cultural barriers are negotiated and diverging traditions are fused.


The Cosmography and Geography of Africa

The Cosmography and Geography of Africa
Author: Leo Africanus
Publisher: Random House
Total Pages: 358
Release: 2023-03-02
Genre: History
ISBN: 0141998822

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The first new translation in over 400 years of one of the great works of the Renaissance In 1518, al-Hasan ibn Muhammad al-Wazzan, a Moroccan diplomat, was seized by pirates while travelling in the Mediterranean. Brought before Pope Leo X, he was persuaded to convert to Christianity, in the process taking the name Johannes Leo Africanus. Acclaimed in the papal court for his learning, Leo would in time write his masterpiece, The Cosmography and the Geography of Africa. The Cosmography was the first book about Africa, and the first book written by a modern African, to reach print. It would remain central to the European understanding of Africa for over 300 years, with its descriptions of lands, cities and peoples giving a singular vision of the vast continent: its urban bustle and rural desolation, its culture, commerce and warfare, its magical herbs and strange animals. Yet it is not a mere catalogue of the exotic: Leo also invited his readers to acknowledge the similarity and relevance of these lands to the time and place they knew. For this reason, The Cosmography and Geography of Africa remains significant to our understanding not only of Africa, but of the world and how we perceive it. Translated by Anthony Ossa-Richardson and Richard Oosterhoff


Travel Knowledge

Travel Knowledge
Author: I. Kamps
Publisher: Springer
Total Pages: 278
Release: 2019-06-12
Genre: Social Science
ISBN: 134962263X

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These essays examine European travel writing from 1500 to 1800, with an emphasis on travel to the East Indies, Africa, and the Levant. By focusing on voyages to the East, the essays allow the voices of marginalised travellers to speak.


Race in Early Modern England

Race in Early Modern England
Author: J. Burton
Publisher: Springer
Total Pages: 300
Release: 2007-08-20
Genre: History
ISBN: 0230607330

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This collection makes available for the first time a rich archive of materials that illuminate the history of racial thought and practices in sixteenth and seventeenth century England. A comprehensive introduction shows how these writings are crucial for understanding the pre-Enlightenment lineages of racial categories.


Things of Darkness

Things of Darkness
Author: Kim F. Hall
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Total Pages: 336
Release: 2018-09-05
Genre: Literary Criticism
ISBN: 1501725459

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The "Ethiope," the "tawny Tartar," the "woman blackamoore," and "knotty Africanisms"—allusions to blackness abound in Renaissance texts. Kim F. Hall's eagerly awaited book is the first to view these evocations of blackness in the contexts of sexual politics, imperialism, and slavery in early modern England. Her work reveals the vital link between England's expansion into realms of difference and otherness—through exploration and colonialism-and the highly charged ideas of race and gender which emerged. How, Hall asks, did new connections between race and gender figure in Renaissance ideas about the proper roles of men and women? What effect did real racial and cultural difference have on the literary portrayal of blackness? And how did the interrelationship of tropes of race and gender contribute to a modern conception of individual identity? Hall mines a wealth of sources for answers to these questions: travel literature from Sir John Mandeville's Travels to Leo Africanus's History and Description of Africa; lyric poetry and plays, from Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra and The Tempest to Ben Jonson's Masque of Blackness; works by Emilia Lanyer, Philip Sidney, John Webster, and Lady Mary Wroth; and the visual and decorative arts. Concentrating on the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Hall shows how race, sexuality, economics, and nationalism contributed to the formation of a modern ( white, male) identity in English culture. The volume includes a useful appendix of not readily accessible Renaissance poems on blackness.


Disordered World

Disordered World
Author: Amin Maalouf
Publisher: A&C Black
Total Pages: 290
Release: 2012-01-01
Genre: History
ISBN: 140882244X

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A dazzling and ultimately hopeful exploration and analysis of our disordered and volatile post-9/11 world by one of the leading international writers and thinkers of our times.


Slavery in the History of Muslim Black Africa

Slavery in the History of Muslim Black Africa
Author: Humphrey J. Fisher
Publisher: NYU Press
Total Pages: 436
Release: 2001-08
Genre: History
ISBN: 9780814727164

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Utilizing the accounts of observers and those who participated in the institution of slavery--slavers, travellers, and slaves themselves-- and the records kept by the judicial institutions of Islam, Fisher (African history, U. of London) explores the political, religious, economic, and social forces surrounding the growth and legitimization of the institution of slavery in Muslim Africa from the 10th century to the 19th century. He explains how the institution differed in nature and harshness both geographically and across time, offering stories where slaves were relatively well treated and rose to prominent places in society, as well as stories in which slaves were treated brutally and often rebelled. Annotation copyrighted by Book News Inc., Portland, OR