Sayyids and Sharifs in Muslim Societies : The Living Links to the Prophet book cover
1st Edition

Sayyids and Sharifs in Muslim Societies
The Living Links to the Prophet

Edited By

Kazuo Morimoto

ISBN 9781138107403
Published May 24, 2017 by Routledge
288 Pages 20 B/W Illustrations

USD $58.95

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Book Description

The global Muslim population includes a large number of lineal descendants and relatives of the Prophet Muhammad. These kinsfolk, most often known as "sayyid" or "sharif," form a distinct social category in many Muslim societies, and their status can afford them special treatment in legal matters and in the political sphere.

This book brings together an international group of renowned scholars to provide a comprehensive examination of the place of the kinsfolk of Muhammad in Muslim societies, throughout history and in a number of different local manifestations. The chapters cover:

  • how the status and privileges of sayyids and sharifs have been discussed by religious scholars
  • how the prophetic descent of sayyids and sharifs has functioned as a symbolic capital in different settings
  • the lives of actual sayyids and sharifs in different times and places

Providing a thorough analysis of sayyids and sharifs from the ninth century to the present day, and from the Iberian Peninsula to the Indonesian Archipelago, this book will be of great interest to scholars of Islamic studies, Middle East and Asian studies.

Table of Contents

Introduction MORIMOTO Kazuo  Part 1: Arguing Sayyids and Sharīfs  1. How to Behave Toward Sayyids And Sharīfs: A Trans-Sectarian Tradition of Dream Accounts MORIMOTO Kazuo  2. Qur’ānic Commentary on the Verse of Khums (al-Anfāl VIII:41) Roy Parviz Mottahedeh  3. Debate on the Status of Sayyid/sharīfs in the Modern Era: The ‘Alawī-Irshādī Dispute and Islamic Reformists in the Middle East YAMAGUCHI Motoki  Part 2: Sayyids and Sharīfs in the Middle East  4. Genealogy, Marriage, and the Drawing of Boundaries among the ‘Alids (Eighth–Twelfth Centuries) Teresa Bernheimer  5. A Historical Atlas on the ‘Alids: a Proposal and a Few Samples Biancamaria Scarcia Amoretti  6. The Reflection of Islamic Tradition on Ottoman Social Structure: The Sayyids and Sharīfs. Rüya Kilic  7. The Ashrāf and the Naqīb Al-Ashrāf in Ottoman Egypt and Syria: A Comparative Analysis Michael Winter  Part 3: Sayyids and Sharīfs beyond the Middle East  8. Shurafā in the Last Years of al-Andalus and in the Morisco Period: Laylat Al-Mawlid and Genealogies of the Prophet Muhammad Mercedes García-Arenal  9. The Role of the Masharifu on the Swahili Coast in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries Valerie J. Hoffman  10. Dihqāns and Sacred Families in Central Asia Ashirbek Muminov  11. Sacred Descent and Sufi Legitimation in a Genealogical Text from Eighteenth-Century Central Asia: The Sharaf Atā’ī Tradition in Khwārazm Devin Deweese  12. Trends of Ashrāfization in India Arthur F. Buehler  13. The Sayyids as Commodities: The Islamic Periodical Alkisah and the Sayyid Community in Indonesia ARAI Kazuhiro

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MORIMOTO Kazuo is an Associate Professor in the Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia at the University of Tokyo. He is the Executive Editor of the International Journal of Asian Studies, and his main research interest lies in the role and position of sayyid/sharifs in Muslim societies.


"It must be said that Stern's survey represents a tremendous moment of synthesis within calendrical studies and is an essential purchase for both research libraries and specialists in calendrics."
J. Cale Johnson, Freie Universitat Berlin, Germany, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies