An Imam in Paris
By Rifa'a al-Tahtawi
Translated & Introduced By Daniel L. Newman
Paperback 414 Pages
ISBN : 9780863564079
Publisher : Saqi Books, London
Account of a Stay in France by an Egyptian Cleric (1826-1831)
About The Book
In the 1820s, Rifa‘a Rafi‘ al-Tahtawi, a young Muslim cleric, was a leading member of the first Egyptian educational mission to Paris, where he remained for five years, documenting his observations of European culture.
His account, Takhlis al-Ibriz fi Talkhis Bariz, is one of the earliest and most influential records of the Muslim encounter with Enlightenment-era European thought, introducing ideas of modernity to his native land. In addition to its historical and literary value, al-Tahtawi’s work offers invaluable insight into early conceptions of Europe and the ‘Other’. Its observations are as vibrant and palpable today as they were over 150 years ago; informative and often acute, to humorous effect.
An irrefutable classic, this new edition of the first English translation is of seminal value. It is introduced and carefully annotated by a scholar fluent in the life, times and milieu of its narrator.
About The Translator
Daniel L. Newman is Professor of Arabic and Course Director of the MA in Arabic-English Translation and Interpreting at the University of Durham. His other works include Modern Arabic Short Stories: A Bilingual Reader (with Ronak Husni, Saqi Books, 2008).
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