The Mantle Odes: Arabic Praise Poems to the Prophet Muhammad

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Indiana University Press, 2010 - Literary Criticism - 306 pages

Three of the most renowned praise poems to the Prophet, the mantle odes span the arc of Islamic history from Muhammad's lifetime, to the medieval Mamluk period, to the modern colonial era. Over the centuries, they have informed the poetic and religious life of the Arab and Islamic worlds. Suzanne Pinckney Stetkevych places her original translations of the poems within the odes' broader cultural context. By highlighting their transformative power as speech acts and their ritual function as gift exchanges, this book not only demonstrates the relevance of these poems to contemporary scholarship but also reveals their power and beauty to the modern reader.

 

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Contents

One Kab ibn Zuhayr and the Mantle of the Prophet
1
The Poem as Ransom Payment
3
Transgression and Redemption
12
The Tacit Panegyric Pact
19
The PreIslamic as ProtoIslamic
28
Kab ibn Zuhayrs Suād Has Departed
30
The Conversion Narrative
33
The Conversion Ode
38
Parts 910 141
141
Supplication and Plea for Intercession
142
Fervent Prayer and Petition
144
Conclusion
148
Three Ah mad Shawqī and the Reweaving of the Mantle
151
Poetic Precedents
153
The Khedive the Shaykh and the Adīb
156
The Colonial Double Bind
160

Desert Journey Raƒīl
42
Praise Madīƒ
46
The Donation of the Mantle
62
Conclusion
66
Two AlBūsīrī and the Dream of the Mantle
70
Poetic Genre
71
Classical and PostClassical Badī
73
The Poet and His Times
81
The Miracle and the Poem
82
Umar ibn alFāriæs Was That Laylás Fire
88
The Mantle Ode
90
Parts 13
92
Warning against the Desires of the Self
95
Praise of the Noble Messenger
97
Parts 48
106
Poeticization and Polemicization
107
The Birth of the Prophet
111
The Miracles of the Prophet
117
The Noble Qurƒān
121
The Night Journey and Ascension
127
The Messengers Jihād and Campaigns
132
The Thematic Structure
163
In the Path of alBūsīrīParts16
166
Chiding the Unruly SoulWarning against Worldly Temptations
171
Repentance Submission and Supplication
173
Prophetic Praise
176
Sīrah Themes The Birth of the Prophet The NightJourney and Ascension The Miracle of the Cave
184
Metapoetic Recapitulation of Prophetic Praise
194
The Ihyāƒ Project Parts712
200
Polemic against Christianity
201
DefensePraise of Jihād and the Prophets Military Campaigns
202
The Sharīah
208
The Glory of Baghdād
216
The Orthodox Caliphs
219
Benediction and Supplication
224
Conclusion
231
Appendix of Arabic Texts
235
Notes
261
Works Cited
287
Index
297
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About the author (2010)

Suzanne Pinckney Stetkevych is Professor of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and Adjunct Professor of Comparative Literature at Indiana University, Bloomington. She is author of The Poetics of Islamic Legitimacy: Myth, Gender, and Ceremony in the Classical Arabic Ode (IUP, 2002).

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