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Reviews of The History of Islamic Theology

“In this accessible study, Nagel offers a comprehensive study of Islam. Using the Koran and other primary sources, the author delves deeply into Islamic history as he traces the development of Islamic doctrine. In an opening chapter, Nagel explores the centrality of the Koran in Islamic theology. He examines the Koran’s canonization process and probes central themes of the Koran’s message: ‘divine power,’ ‘the human creature’ and ‘attaining salvation.’ In subsequent chapters, he explores the relationships between such Islamic sects as the Sunni and the Shiite, and the two types of Islamic theological literature: the hadith, an oral report or a story, and the kalam, a genre that ‘develops theological and metaphysical statements.’ He also examines Islamic monotheism; the development of Islamic philosophy in the Middle Ages and its relation to theology; and the relationship between Islam and Gnosticism. Although the focus of the book is on the early development of Islam in the ninth through 12th centuries, Nagel demonstrates the ways in which Muslims have carried these beliefs into the modern world. A helpful chronology and a list of suggested readings complete the book. The book’s wealth of information can be mined repeatedly for gems of knowledge about Islam.”
Publishers Weekly

The History of Islamic Theology: From Muhammad to the Present is a thoughtful, informative, carefully presented and scholarly tracing of the evolution of Islamic doctrine from its origins down to the present day. Written by Islamic theology and history expert Tilman Nagel (University of Goettingen, Germany) The History of Islamic Theology has been superbly translated from its German original into English by Thomas Thornton. While the primary focus is on the early development of Islam in the ninth through twelfth centuries, Nagel also reveals the many ways in which Muslims from around the world have carried the precepts and doctrines of Islam into contemporary times. A strong recommended addition to Islamic Studies supplemental reading lists and academic reference collections. The History of Islamic Theology is also available in a hardcover edition.”
Midwest Book Review