Food Culture and Health in Pre-Modern Muslim Societies

English | ISBN: 900419441X | 2010 | PDF | 300 Pages | 3,4 MB


English | ISBN: 900419441X | 2010 | PDF | 300 Pages | 3,4 MB
This book is a very valuable reference work on agriculture, food, medicine, and markets in the premodern Middle East. It covers an amazing range of things, especially foods, ranging from olives to ostriches. Anyone interested in Middle Eastern food will want some access to it. The articles are reprinted from the Encyclopedia of Islam, issued between 1960 and 2004.
This creates one problem: some of the articles are long out of date. The fact that they refer to “pre-modern” times makes this less important than it might be, but some try to update the coverage, and scholarship in areas like agriculture has progressed enormously since the 1960s. It turns out that the article on agriculture was originally published in 1964, and as with several other articles it seems to have been written rather before then. It is a superb article, but dated. the same goes for the general article on food-it originally appeared 1965. In spite of considerable updating in David Waines’ very comprehensive and well-done introduction, a great deal of modern work is missed-all the work of Charles Perry, for example. Most of the other articles are more up-to-date, many being from the late 1990s or 2000s-the one on medicine (in general) is especially full, excellently done, and up-to-the-minute, having appeared in 1999 and rather ahead of its time at that.
The other complaint one might have with this book is a minor labeling note: it is about the Middle East, not Islamic societies. It covers a good deal of pre-Islamic material, Christian Arab culture, and so on, and does NOT cover Islam in southeast Asia, although Indonesia has more Muslims than any other country. Islam in sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian subcontinent is barely noted. So, be warned, if your interests in Islam run to Bangladesh or Malaysia.

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Food Culture and Health in Pre-Modern Muslim Societies.pdf