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The Alexander Romance in Persia and the East

Richard Stoneman, Kyle Erickson and Ian Netton (eds.)
 

Series: Ancient Narrative Supplementum 15

ISBN-13: 9789491431043

Publication year: 2012

Publication type: Book

Pages: xiv, 416

Cover: Hardcover

Format: 175 x 245 x 26 mm 1149 g; full colour ill.

Price excl. VAT: 90.00

Price incl. VAT: 95.40

Alexander the Great of Macedon was no stranger to controversy in his own time. Conqueror of the Greek states, of Egypt and of the Persian Empire as well as many of the principalities of the Indus Valley, he nevertheless became revered as well as vilified. Was he a simply a destroyer of the ancient civilizations and religions of these regions, or was he a hero of the Persian dynasties and of Islam? The conflicting views that were taken of him in the Middle East in his own time and the centuries that followed are still reflected in the tensions that exist between east and west today.

The story of Alexander became the subject of legend in the medieval west, but was perhaps even more pervasive in the east. The Alexander Romance was translated into Syriac in the sixth century and may have become current in Persia as early as the third century AD. From these beginnings it reached into the Persian national epic, the Shahnameh, into Jewish traditions, and into the Qur’an and subsequent Arab romance. The papers in this volume all have the aim of deepening our understanding of this complex development. If we can understand better why Alexander is such an important figure in both east and west, we shall be a little closer to understanding what unites two often antipathetic worlds.

This volume collects the papers delivered at the conference of the same title held at the University of Exeter from July 26-29 2010. More than half the papers were by invited speakers and were designed to provide a systematic view of the subject; the remainder were selected for their ability to carry research forward in an integrated way.
 
Extra information
 
Contents
 
Introduction IX
 
Note on Transliteration and Bibliography XV
 
PART 1 FORMATION OF A TRADITION - 1
 
RICHARD STONEMAN
Persian Aspects of the Romance Tradition 3
 
DANIEL L. SELDEN
Mapping the Alexander Romance 19
 
FAUSTINA C.W. DOUFIKAR-AERTS
King Midas’ Ears on Alexander’s Head: In Search of the Afro-Asiatic Alexander Cycle 61
 
GRAHAM ANDERSON
The Alexander Romance and the Pattern of Hero-Legend 81
 
PART 2 PERSPECTIVES - 103
 
CORINNE JOUANNO
The Persians in Late Byzantine Alexander Romances: A Portrayal under Turkish Influences 105
 
HENDRIK BOESCHOTEN
Adventures of Alexander in Medieval Turkish 117
 
WARWICK BALL
Some Talk of Alexander Myth and Politics in the North-West Frontier of British India 127
 
PART 3 TEXTS - 159
 
HAILA MANTEGHI
Alexander the Great in the Shāhnāmeh of Ferdowsī 161
 
MARIO CASARI
The King Explorer: A Cosmographic Approach to the Persian Alexander 175
 
DAVID ZUWIYYA
‘Umāra’s Qiṣṣa al-Iskandar as a Model of the Arabic Alexander Romance 205
 
EL-SAYED M. GAD
Al-Tabari’s Tales of Alexander: History and Romance 219
 
EMILY COTTRELL
Al-Mubaššir ibn Fātik and the α Version of the Alexander Romance 233
 
LESLIE S.B. MCCOULL
Aspects of Alexander in Coptic Egypt 255
 
YURIKO YAMANAKA
The Islamized Alexander in Chinese Geographies and Encyclopaedias 263
 
PART 4 THEMES - 275
 
DANIEL OGDEN
Sekandar, Dragon-Slayer 277
 
SABINE MÜLLER
Stories of the Persian Bride: Alexander and Roxane 295
 
SULOCHANA ASIRVATHAM
Alexander the Philosopher in the Greco-Roman, Persian and Arabic Traditions 311
 
ALEKSANDRA SZALC
In Search of Water of Life: The Alexander Romance and Indian Mythology 327
 
ALEKSANDRA KLĘCZAR
The Kingship of Alexander the Great in the Jewish Versions of the Alexander Narrative 339
 
ORY AMITAY
Alexander in Bavli Tamid: In Search for a Meaning 349
 
PART 5 IMAGES - 367
 
OLGA PALAGIA
The Impact of Alexander the Great in the Art of Central Asia 369
 
AGNIESZKA FULINSKA
Oriental Imagery and Alexander’s Legend in Art: Reconnaissance 383
 
FIRUZA MELVILLE
A Flying King 405
 
Index 411
 
Reviews
 
"This book will take almost everyone on an exhilarating learning curve. While it is very much a volume for specialists, there will also be many who will consult it for its expertise in any of the above subjects", Judith Weingarten in BMCR 2012.11.08.- Judith Weingarten, BMCR 2012.11.08, http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/
 
- Francesca Bellino in Bulletin critique des Annales islamologiques 30 (2015), 25-16. http://www.ifao.egnet.net/bcai/30/8/
- Remke Kruk in Journal of the American Oriental Society 135.2 (2015), pp. 387-390
- David Elton Gay, Fabula 54 (2013), Heft 3/4, pp. 368-370
- Judith Weingarten, BMCR 2012.11.08, http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/

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