Fire, the Star and the Cross

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I.B.Tauris, Feb 2, 2006 - History - 268 pages
The first comprehensive discussion of the cultural achievements of non-Muslim cultures in Iran. This book will appeal to scholars and students of religious studies and Iranian history alike and will also be of great interest to political scientists and economists concerned with modern Iran. Contemporary political events have generated a strong interest in minorities in the Middle East. Although today the region is mostly identified with Islam, it has been home to many other great cultures, and the civilization of the Islamic world is itself indebted to the various peoples that the Arabs subdued in the 7th and 8th centuries. Far from fading away after the Arab conquest, the inhabitants of the Iranian plateau and of Mesopotamia were central players in the lives of their regions. However, the magnitude of their contribution to the emergence of the early Islamic world has hitherto been neglected. In this fascinating and groundbreaking study, Khanbaghi offers a comprehensive discussion of those groups that resisted assimilation to the new Islamic order yet continued to participate actively in the socio-political life of their homeland. He concentrates on Iran, which due to its complex religious history offers unique opportunities for the study of non-Muslim communities, specifically of Zoroastrians, Jews and Christians

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About the author (2006)

Aptin Khanbaghi is a scholar of Iranian history, based at the Margaret Beaufort Institute, University of Cambridge.

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