This book, first published in 1969, brings out clearly and concisely the complex moulding of Arab identity. The present-day Arabic-speaking peoples may be traced back to the Arabian tribes that were later to be shaped into a people by Islam. With the Muslim conquests the language of the Arabian tribes became the vernacular of a vast cosmopolitan society extending throughout the Middle East and Southern Mediterranean.
1. Origins: Muhammad and the Quran 2. The Outpouring from the Desert: the Bedouin Conquests 3. A New State: the Arab Kingdom and the Muslim Empire 4. The Flowering of a Civilization: the Islamic World Empire 5. A Medieval Confrontation: Islam and Christendom 6. The Empire Crumbles: the Turks Come In: The Long Stagnation 7. Stirrings of Nationalism: the Reshaping of Arab Identity 8. Modern Times