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The Barber of Damascus: Nouveau Literacy in the Eighteenth-Century Ottoman Levant

Sajdi, Dana

Published by Stanford University Press
ISBN 10: 0804797277 / ISBN 13: 9780804797276
New / Soft cover / Quantity Available: 2
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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Barber of Damascus: Nouveau Literacy in ...

Publisher: Stanford University Press

Binding: Soft cover

Book Condition: New


2015. Paperback. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780804797276

About this title:

Synopsis: This book is about a barber, Shihab al-Din Ahmad Ibn Budayr, who shaved and coiffed, and probably circumcised and healed, in Damascus in the 18th century. The barber may have been a "nobody," but he wrote a history book, a record of the events that took place in his city during his lifetime. Dana Sajdi investigates the significance of this book, and in examining the life and work of Ibn Budayr, uncovers the emergence of a larger trend of history writing by unusual authors—people outside the learned establishment—and a new phenomenon: nouveau literacy.

The Barber of Damascus offers the first full-length microhistory of an individual commoner in Ottoman and Islamic history. Contributing to Ottoman popular history, Arabic historiography, and the little-studied cultural history of the 18th century Levant, the volume also examines the reception of the barber's book a century later to explore connections between the 18th and the late 19th centuries and illuminates new paths leading to the Nahda, the Arab Renaissance.

About the Author: Dana Sajdi is Associate Professor of History at Boston College. She is the editor of Ottoman Tulips, Ottoman Coffee: Leisure and Lifestyle in the Eighteenth Century (2008) and coeditor of Transforming Loss into Beauty: Essays in Arabic Literature and Culture in Memory of Madga Al-Nowaihi (2008).

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